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Credits4Health

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CREDITS4HEALTH is a project funded by the European Commission under the FP7 Framework Programme 

and run by a Consortium consisting of national and local government bodies, enterprises, non-profit organizations, universities and research centres. It is a Social Innovation and Health Promotion Project aimed at finding out and testing a system effective in engaging, nurturing and keeping people committed in the adoption of personalised wellness paths and healthy life-styles. The main goal of the C4H project is to develop a sustainable system that encourages people living in Euro-Mediterranean Countries to enhance their level of physical activity and adopt healthy eating habits by means of a person-centric approach and a variety of incentives. The model will be tested in three European Countries (Greece, Italy, and Spain), with the long-term objective of validating the C4H approach and extending it to all of Europe. The world’s health is undergoing an unprecedented transition on several fronts, particularly concerning epidemiological, nutritional and demographic issues. Many researches confirm the looming pandemic of Non Communicable Diseases and Chronic Diseases (NCD, CD), which represent the top cause of death worldwide, killing more than 36 million people in 2008.

More than 9 million of these deaths occurred before the age of 60, and could have been largely prevented, tackling risk factors like physical inactivity, raised blood pressure, overweight and obesity, raised cholesterol, tobacco smoking, and raised blood glucose.

This situation is very well schematised by the 3-four-50 model, which points out how three behaviours (poor diet, physical inactivity, and tobacco use) contribute to four chronic diseases (cancer, heart disease and stroke, type 2 diabetes, and pulmonary diseases such as asthma) that cause over 50% of all deaths worldwide. This clearly points out how important wellness is to individuals and countries as a whole. Therefore a crucial issue our societies have to address is fighting the increasing prevalence of lifestyle related diseases. We all know that, in the long term, smoking, over-consuming alcohol, eating unhealthy food, and staying inactive, pose serious threats to our health and well-being: so why is it so difficult to convince people to turn harmful rooted habits into wellness preserving actions?

The C4H concept is based on one fundamental game-changing idea that needs to be implemented in order to foster the transition to a new approach towards health and well-being: people engagement or, in other words, people empowerment. This represents a radical shift from a one-way delivered healthcare to a multi-stakeholder approach in which people play the pivotal role, being actively involved in maintaining and improving their health status. The C4H vision is to have people directly acting for their health and wellbeing, thus contributing to the prevention of chronic diseases and enhancing the quality of their lives.

CREDITS4HEALTH is a Social Innovation and Health Promotion Project aimed at finding out a system effective in engaging, nurturing and keeping people committed in the adoption of personalised wellness paths and healthy life-styles. Its main goal is to develop a sustainable and scalable system based on the “credits for health” concept that encourages people living in Euro-Mediterranean Countries to enhance their level of physical activityand adopt healthy eating habits. The model designed to obtain these results will be tested in three European Countries (Greece, Italy, and Spain), with the long-term objectives of validating the C4H approach and extending it to all of Europe.

C4H is based on in-depth and specific analysis carried out on similar projects, with the aim of capitalising best practices in the Health Sector, especially methodologies and standards for the clinical, social and methodological outcomes of field tests.

http://www.credits4health.it