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 NIS and CECC Partner Countries > Better health by cure and prevention
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Better health by cure and prevention

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Improving health care in societies undergoing rapid change has been a primary focus of international research co-operation (INCO and INCO 2 programmes). Much of the work in this sector has sought to find solutions to health problems related to the political and economic reform process which so many NIS and CEEC states are going through.

Therefore, objectives include analysing, comparing and assessing information which can be used to drive research to help produce more efficient health care systems, both in terms of management policy and finance. There is also a move to improve public health via work-related and occupational health research, prevention and control of non-communicable diseases, and supporting epidemiological research potential.

Some health difficulties faced by these countries stem from environmental factors such as the adverse effect of pollutants (including radiation) on populations. Projects dealing with this offer a cross-sectoral approach, harnessing industrial technologies and improvements in environmental and public protection. And new studies are being carried out examining how environmental factors affect child growth and birth defects.

Nuclear safety drive boosts health

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RODOS (Real time On-line DecisiOn Support) increases the support available for dealing with nuclear emergencies and for managing the health and environmental consequences of nuclear accidents. Research was carried out by 40 institutes from 20 European countries who together produced a coherent and harmonised product. A number of countries in eastern and western Europe have now installed RODOS as a 'decision support tool' in their national emergency centres. Moreover, projects and a strategy plan to tackle the unprecedented increase of thyroid cancer in children in Belarus, the Ukraine - and to a lesser extent in Russia - were initiated after the accident. Equipment and drugs for children suffering from thyroid cancer were delivered and technical assistance was given. The work was a success, leading also to the establishment of an international post-Chernobyl thyroid tissue and databank in three NIS countries.

 

Fighting malaria

Malaria is a disease that affects some NIS countries. Scientists in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan are working with western European research teams to develop new parasitology tools. These will be used for epidemiological studies and will be integrated into local surveillance health systems.

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Confirming the international role of community research