Helse Vest Health Research Conference at Solstrand Hotel & Bad

Helse Vest Health Research Conference at Solstrand Hotel & Bad
The HV Research Conference 2014 took place 30-31 October in the facilities of Solstrand
Hotel & Bad in Os. This has become a traditional event, housing 105 participants this year.
Professional Director Baard-Christian Schem from Helse Vest pointed out the highlights
in the program, namely international focus, particularly through potential Horizon 2020
projects, collaboration between the health regions, research infrastructure and Biobank Norge,
user involvement and communication of results. Baard-Christian referred to 37 received
research applications to become a strategic priority area under Helse Vest in the coming five
years, within six predefined thematic fields. The chosen areas will be decided in November.
He also announced that an upcoming new HV research strategy for 2016-20 will be launched
in 2015.
Professor John-Arne Røttingen from Folkehelseinstituttet presented the implementation of
HelseOmsorg21, based on 140 targeted recommendations, where goals for a good health
system and a good knowledge system should be integrated to give adequate and useful health
knowledge, through improved research, education and innovation. John-Arne Røttingen
highlighted five strategic priority areas:
1. Knowledge improvement within the municipalities, based on medical and health
research for, within, with and at the specific local community
2. Business policy priority, where it was recommended to increase the convergence
between business and public capital
3. Improved access to public health data “our next oil”, where sharing and
“recirculation” of data from clinics, registers and biobanks should be facilitated
4. An evidence based health and welfare system should be established
5. An elevated focus on international research
Following the submission of the HelseOmsorg21 document in June 2014, a long term plan for
research 2015-2024 has been released (03.10.2014) as the white paper Report to the Storting
no.7, with particular attention on health as a business related priority area.
Research Director John Torgils Vaage from Helse Sør-Øst presented a national and overall
strategic approach to personalized medicine with implications for research. He informed that
this strategic approach included main chapters on implementation, juridical aspects, economy,
organization and education. John Torgils Vaage pointed out that a primary cancer tumour can
be treated based on information from the individual gene profile, i.e. a precision medical
approach, and that a helpful revolution has lately taken place in deep gene sequencing. The
NFR Biotek initiative “Digital Life” has a high relevance for personalized medicine. Among
the prioritized technology fields are image diagnostic capacity (especially PET/MR and
PET/CT) and deep gene sequencing. It is recommended that PET machines with cyclotron
and tracer production should be established in each health region, and that a national effort
sharing plan should be established.
Professor Ole-Jan Iversen from the Medical Faculty, NTNU, presented the evaluation of the
six strategic initiatives from Helse Vest in the period 2009-2013, from which MedViz was
one of them. The Evaluation Committee concluded that all the initiatives had been successful
and that the financing from Helse Vest had stimulated the scientific production. For MedViz
it was particularly highlighted the cross-disciplinary collaboration, which was highly
appreciated and exemplified by the following illustration:
The MedViz collaboration, here represented by the Leadership Team meeting on June 6,
2013. From the left: Arvid Lundervold, Antonella Zanna Munthe-Kaas, Odd Helge Gilja,
Ingfrid Helene Salvesen Haldorsen, Ragnar Nortvedt, Elin Myhrvold Riple, Dag Magne
Ulvang and Helwig Hauser.
The Evaluation Committee also gave the advice that MedViz should put a stronger focus on
PET research in the future.
Professor Signe Agnes Flottorp from the Knowledge Centre presented the idea of user
involvement in different phases of health research. The added values can be more relevant and
better research, a stronger focus on effects and consequences for the society besides
representing a positive democratic concept. The European Science Foundation wish to
identify a best practice for user involvement in health research and it is also a central concept
in HelseOmsorg21. Signe Agnes also presented thoughts on implementation research, with
particular focus on several Cochrane studies of implementation in practice. She recommended
the book “Diffusion of Innovation” by Everett Rogers (2003, 5th ed.), representing 4.000
studies from implementation of research in Agriculture. Rogers proposes that four main
elements influence the spread of a new idea: the innovation itself, communication channels,
time and a social system. See also the open access, peer-reviewed online journal that aims to
publish research relevant to the scientific study of methods to promote the uptake of research
findings into routine healthcare in clinical, organisational or policy contexts.
Professional Manager Audun Farbrot from Handelshøyskolen BI presented “Research
communication – what, why and how?” Audun has published a practical handbook
“Forskningskommunikasjon” within this field. Audun highlighted that it is the audience who
determines if your communication is interesting. Timing is important. It is e.g. much more
likely that a newspaper would publish an article called “What does the fox researcher say?”
right after the hit “What does the fox say?” peaked on the hit lists. To get attention, you
should start with a good content, choose your target group, highlight the news, challenge the
audience, accept that professional disagreement is sound and that the simplest is the best, to
follow some of the rules of thumb from Audun Farbrot.
Finally Professor Øystein Bruserud won the Helse Vest Research Prize for 2013 for his
research within acute myelogenous leukemia, and Associate Professor Tine Nordgreen won
the Helse Vest Innovation Prize 2013 for her –eMeistring software, representing guided
clinical psychology treatment on the net. Congratulations to both!
From the left: Head of the Steering Board in Helse Vest, Terje Vareberg, Helse Vest
Research Prize winner Professor Øystein Bruserud, Helse Vest Innovation Prize winner
Associate Professor Tine Nordgreen and Professional Director in Helse Vest, BaardChristian Schem. Photo: Bjørn Erik Larsen.