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Thematic fields

The funding program supports research projects within the following three thematic fields.

 

Thematic field 1: Needs-oriented patient information
With the help of the funding, the improvement of the specific knowledge of chronically ill persons through needs-oriented patient information should be examined. Projects are funded which answer questions regarding the need for patient information in terms of diseases and their treatment as well as access roads to information of different patient groups and which demonstrate approaches for targeted measures. Equally, projects can be funded which examine the effect and sustainability of targeted patient information, e.g. with the use of new media, on dependent variables such as self-management, treatment decisions, utilisation of health services, compliance and patient-relevant endpoints (e.g. quality of life, course of illness) as well as costs of illness.

 

Thematic field 2: Training programs for persons with chronic diseases
In the framework of the funding guidelines, training programs and similar interventions should be developed further and evaluated which strengthen patients’ ability to deal with their chronic disease autonomously (self-management) through the imparting of knowledge and competencies. Consequently, the ability to make self-determined decisions regarding their lifestyle and their dealing with the illness and its consequences should be increased (empowerment). This encompasses examinations regarding the orientation of the training programs to the life situations (including working life) of the patients. Funding can be requested for projects that investigate the effectiveness and sustainability of patient training programs or similar patient-oriented interventions, for instance with regard to self-management, treatment decisions, utilisation of health services, compliance and patient-relevant endpoints (e.g. quality of life, course of illness) as well as health costs.

 

Thematic field 3: Organisation of a participatory arrangement of care
The funding guideline targets findings regarding how patient and participant orientation and a participatory arrangement of care can be anchored in a sustainable manner into care structures in accordance with needs and/or specific to target groups. Funding can be granted for research projects that provide information about effectiveness and sustainability of the integration and active involvement of patients in their care with respect to the care given, the course of the illness and the participation in everyday life (including working life). This encompasses research on organisational factors of care which prevent or enable a participatory arrangement of care (e.g. time factors, composition of the treatment team, culture within the clinics, interaction of different care sectors, self-help work, treatment settings).

Comprehensive to all of the three thematic areas, the orientation of participatory elements of care to particular target groups is of particular importance. This includes examining the benefits of information, training and care structures depending on different starting positions of the patients. Of particular interest are projects which focus on socially disadvantaged groups. The effectiveness and sustainability of participatory care should be particularly tested for groups of patients and rehabilitees which are seen as difficult to reach (e.g. for persons with a migration background, persons with a low educational level).

An appropriate consideration of gender-specific aspects is expected.