News

Jan 2015

The French Agency for Development has put on-line a synthesis of the seminar “Information and communication technologies : Innovative health solutions in Africa” (in french). Guillaume Jeannerod, EpiConcept’s general director, gave the perspectives of EpiConcept during the round-table session entitled “Distance training for health personnel, epidemiological surveillance and diagnostic assistance : Information and communication technologies as health interfaces. Can we do everything at a distance?”

Jan 2015

Etalab and the French national health insurance agency organized a hackathon day (collaborative computer-based event) on the 26th of January for the exploitation of the DAMIR database. Taking place at the Paillasse in Paris, an “open source” biology laboratory, software developers, data scientists, economists and researchers worked in teams on various “big data” projects using the DAMIR database made available exclusively for this occasion. The DAMIR database contains all the  transactions from several years of health insurance reimbursements (amounting to several hundred gigbytes of data) having, of course, all names or personal information removed. At the close of the day, the re-use of the data was presented by each group showing the new usages, services and associated applications of this data.
A team from EpiConcept compared the DAMIR database and public data from the national breast cancer screening programme to show the interest in crossing these data to calculate the cost of this public health programme. The event allowed the various teams to understand the extent and content of the DAMIR database as well as resolve the difficulties in exploiting it through the aid of the national health insurance team that was present. At the end of the day, the minister of health, Marisol Touraine, came to see the results of the various projects and to encourage this kind of data sharing which will support future technical advances.

Jan 2015

From the 16th to the 28th of February, EpiConcept will be running its “Into Epi” course in Veyrier du Lac, France for the European CDC (Centre for Disease Prevention and Control). The objective of the course is to train, through hands-on activities, European epidemiologists in the use of IT and statistics tools for surveillance, investigation, research and communication activities.

Jan 2015

EpiConcept has been contracted by the Hong Kong department of health for a sixth year of Field Epidemiology training which will be composed of courses and distance supervision of FETP (field epidemiology training program) trainees.

Jan 2015

Begun in January, Orange télécom for the region Centre (south of Paris) started using their own dedicated Evrest Entreprise information system. As a response to the requests from large companies who wanted to use the Evrest system, EpiConcept proposed a private version of Evrest to the occupational doctors of these companies and included functions for organisational divisions. This allows the company to export data and exploit statistiques at a finer level (geographic, hierarchique, and others), while still benefiting from the support of the national Evrest system. Evrest (Evolution and Relations in health at work) is a system for research and health monitoring in the work environment. It is a multi-year observatory commission that uses questionnaires created in collaboration with researchers and occupational doctors. This system will allow the occupational doctors to analyse and monitor different aspects of the work environment and employee health.

Jan 2015

EpiConcept has proposed its services to the WHO (World Health Organization) to support the Ebola epidemic surveillance work in Guinea. Within the framework of the GOARN programme, EpiConcept epidemiologists take two month stints at the WHO headquarters in Conakry, Guinea.  Their mission is to participate in the collect, centralisation and analysis of data coming from the field. Complementary to the surveillance activities, the EpiConcept team participates in the investigation of confirmed cases.

Dec 2014

The NGO Médecins du Monde (Doctors of the World) have decided to put in place a patient medical records system based on Voozanoo to improve the case management of persons registered in their aid, care and orientation centres, both fixed and mobile, and to harmonise the data collection in France and internationally.  
For the past 30 years, Médecins du Monde (MDM) has intervened in France and abroad in the care for individuals on the fringes of society. In 2000, MDM established an observatory commission for access to care at the French missions (OMF) to measure the concrete results of programmes and to elucidate the real conditions for persons in precarious social situations to receive care. In 2004, the directors of the French missions of MDM created an observatory commission for the international network of care centres (ORI) with the objective of obtaining data on the entire population of individuals welcomed into all countries’ care centres. It is with these two activities that MDM wanted to put in place a patient information system.
Since its origins, EpiConcept has expended much effort in collaborating with NGOs to set up information systems for their operations centres. EpiConcept collaborates with over a hundred NGOs globally and has been working with Médecins du Monde for over ten years.
It is in this context that Médecins du Monde has chosen EpiConcept and Voozanoo to assure the development of the patient medical records systems by integrating the logistics constraints of the mobile teams. A number of pilot sites in France and abroad have been set up in order to validate the software solution before a large-scale deployment.
EpiConcept hosts the storage of the personal data in accordance with its engagements as a certified host for personal health data. MDM will be able to upgrade the composition of the patient file themselves thanks to the way the Voozanoo system works. The first pilot sites are planned to be operational by the end of the second quarter of 2015.

Dec 2014

On the 1st of December, the pilot project led by the eSIS consortium and the Gard-Lozère’s regional cancer screening authority (GLD) went into operation. It is a completely digital mammography information system.  The pilot project consists of five radiology offices (public and private) that will participate with the GLD to use the eSiS system that was jointly developed by EpiConcept and the company CDI to exchange and centralise all mammographies produced by these radiology offices for the first and second x-ray readings.

Dec 2014

A strategic action plan 2010-2014 to improve the health of persons “under judicial watch” was created jointly by the ministries of health and justice. The plan highlighted actions oriented toward health promotion as established by the the UN’s Ottawa charter of 1986. As part of this plan, the DPJJ (directorate for youth judicial protection) seeks to reduce the consumption of psychoactive products by minors under court protection involved or not in trafficking and dealing, through health promotion  tools. The approach is to create an auto-evaluation questionnaire using EpiConcept's Voozanoo platform which can be used by the individual to improve prevention, quitting and case handling. The collected data will also be used to improve general knowledge on the state of health of these minors and to identify their needs and the corresponding actions for the DPJJ.

Dec 2014

The Génépy (multidisciplinary care for persons in the Midi-Pyrenees region with a genetic risk to ovary, colorectal or endometrial cancer) network is part of the French National Institute of Cancer’s plan to ensure personalized follow-up for all persons with a risque of hereditary cancer. Phare (Prédisposition Héréditaire aux cAncers REgion Grand Ouest) is a Voozanoo based web application to manage the registration, care and followup of the individuals in its network. It has been used since 2011 in the greater north-west region of France. Using the Phare application, Génépy will coordinate patient management at a regional level and include all the professionals involved in the patient’s follow-up:
  - the patient is included in the network after consulting with a genetic oncologist
  - the personalised follow-up plans evolve based on current knowledge, age and patient history
  - patient visits are centrally planned
  - the network’s doctors can fill in an examination record directly in Phare and will receive secure emails on the patient's status

Dec 2014

Researcher Gil Bellis (Research unit “Mortality, health, Epidemiology” -UR5) approached EpiConcept to create the data collection tool for the socio-demographic study “Cystic fibrosis, Family and Society”. This study will enrich and complement the French Cystic Fibrosis Registry, MucoRegistre, with a second source of data. Voozanoo was used to create the MucoRegistre and is used by the informations system director of the national institute of demographic studies.
The study will
  - compare the health events found in the MucoRegistre and the stages of life from which they are collected
  - measure the nature and intensity of interactions between cystic fibrosis and the various stages of an individual’s life

In 2011 a first pilot put in place a paper-based questionnaire for three distinct age groups; children, adolescents, adults. Following up on that initial pilot, the definitive questionnaire tool is an online tool for adolescents and adults. This is being proposed to all patients of the CRCMs (cystic fibrosis resource and competency centers) to the targeted age groups and included in the MucoRegister.

Nov 2014

Wepi, the free online questionnaire tool created for health professionals, now includes statistics. The new tab in the interface allows the owner of the questionnaire to see information about the completeness of the questionnaire responses, variable by variable as well as a statistical analysis (mean, median, quartiles, frequencies, etc.) of each variable for the entire population or for each subgroup of records submitted by a given surveyor. 
With over 500 users, Wepi has shown itself to be a very useful online data collection tool with the benefit of requiring just a few minutes to understand how to make and share a questionnaire on-line.

    

Nov 2014

EpiConcept has signed a contract with the ECDC (European Centre for Disease prevention and Control) to continue studies on the effectiveness of flu vaccines. This contract will allow EpiConcept to continue the coordination of the I-MOVE (Influenza - Monitoring Vaccine Effectiveness) programme, a network of 20 European institutes who have been measuring the effectiveness of flu vaccines in Europe since 2007.

Oct 2014

Since June of 2014, EpiConcept’s NGO team undertook five missions (Nepal, Burkina Faso, Haiti, Egypt, Bangladesh) to support the field teams of the NGO Terre des Hommes (TDH) Switzerland. These missions were for implementing and training the human resource teams on Homère in order for them to be able to use the application with as much autonomy as possible. The country field teams from India, Jordan and Lebanon were also included in these missions. The coordination between EpiConcept and TDH allowed the eight countries to implement Homère in a record 6 months.
The use of Homère replaces disparate information systems and methods and allows above all, a standardised process for payroll/HR. As for the application itself, the experience will allow the team to enrich it with new data import functions (employees, work contracts) allowing a much more rapid setup. For the EpiConcept NGO team, they are now able to propose a standard setup method for a field payroll management system at the national level.

Oct 2014

The French national institute for demographic studies (INED) has signed a framework agreement with EpiConcept for an accompaniment to their information services and systems and the creation of IT projects on their current Voozanoo 3 platform as well as the newly installed Voozanoo 4 platform. The informatics service will use these platforms to develop questionnaires, internal management tools, and specific information systems. The INED has been using Voozanoo since 2005.
Sébastien Becquerel, EpiConcept’s framework director stated, “It is very motivating to see the INED deploy Voozanoo 4 on their servers. We’ve worked with their team for a number of years and have a great relationship with them.”

Sep 2014

On the 25th of September, EpiConcept put in place a Voozanoo IT environment at the Rouen university hospital system which will host an information system for declaring cases of Cryptosporidiosis. The system will be created by the Cryptoanofel Network and will allow hospitals to make their declarations on-line.

Sep 2014

  Save the Children (SCI) UK has contracted EpiConcept to assess the existing Health Information System (HIS) options used within Save the Children for humanitarian activities. This consultancy was requested by the technical direction of SCI and aims to provide technical solutions, designs and recommendations for a future HIS. There will also be a few workshops included. The consultation began in July and is expected to be completed in the beginning of 2015.

Sep 2014

Etienne Sévin took part in the round table session entitled “Digital technologies for development organisations: How to use them and for which goals?” to relate EpiConcept’s vision on the use of new technnologies in the area of development. The forum took place from September 8-10 in Paris and had as it’s slogan “3 days and 3 nights to co-create tomorrow’s solutions”.

Sep 2014

EpiConcept presented a workshop on using the latest version of its free on-line and mobile questionnaire tool Wepi at the 4th forum for Geographic information for Relief and Development in Chambery, France on the 22nd and 23rd of September. The Wepi web application had recently been updated to include a GPS variable type which allows the questionnaire designer the possibility to save the geolocation values for two general question types.
The first, "Where are you now?" uses the géolocalisation information from the GPS system on a smartphone or tablet (via the application ODK Collect) where the questionnaire is being filled out. It is useful to save the latitude and longitude of a disease case in epidemiological investigations for example, in order to later map out all of the disease cases. The second general question type is "Where did a past event take place?" This allows the user to place a point anywhere on a map. Depending on the circumstances of the questionnaire, the system saves as many as 5 variables for each question, the lattitude, longitude, altitude, accuracy in meters and a time stamp. Wepi uses the OpenStreetMap technology to display the maps. EpiConcept was a co-sponsor of this 4th GeOnG forum.

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Aug 2014

From the 30th June to the 2nd of July EpiConcept organised the 6th annual I-MOVE (Influenza Monitoring Vaccine Effectiveness in Europe) meeting in Lisbon, Portugal. During the three days, 50 experts (virologist, epidemiologists) from EpiConcept, national institutes in Europe, US, Australia, Canada, Latin America and international agencies (ECDC, WHO-EURO, WHO, PAHO) presented the results and challenges of the studies conducted during the 2013-14 influenza season. As in previous year, the meeting was an excellent platform to openly discuss epidemiological and laboratory methods and to address the current research questions in the area of influenza vaccine effectiveness.