Singed memorandum of understanding with the Cancer Patient Associations in Cyprus

On 13th of Feb 2019 the CEO of International Institute for Compassionate Care (IICC) Prof George Samoutis and the CEO of the Cyprus Association of Cancer Patients and Friends (PASYKAF) Nikolas Philippou signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU). The MOU formally endorses the efforts concerning a strategic and technical collaboration in regards to evidence informed Compassionate Care. The two parties will exchange institutional expertise and experiences concerning the preparation, implementation and institutionalizationof Compassionate Care policies and practices in Healthcare.

The INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR COMPASSIONATE CARE and PASYKAF will consider jointly undertaking a series of projects, including but not limited to:
1. Technical support for the development, implementation and institutionalization of clinical practice guidelines on Compassionate Care;
2. Technical support for the development of clinical audit methods and processes on Compassionate Care;
3. Sharing the lessons learnt in developing relevant courses and educational material on Compassionate Care;
4. Joint work, through pilots, to support the development of technical and institutional capacities in delivering online courses on Compassionate Care;
5. Joint awareness raising and policy advocacy events for global funders (e.g. EU, World Bank, WHO), policy makers and fund raising activities for joint projects.

Interview of Dr. Flouris and Dr. Samoutis about the HEAT-SHIELD project

A live interview of Dr. Andreas Flouris and Dr. George Samoutis about the HEAT-SHIELD project, a research programme funded by the European Union (EU). The interview was given on Ant1 Channel in Cyprus on June 12, 2018. Dr. Flouris is the Director of FAME Lab (, an Associate Professor at the University of Thessaly Department of Exercise Science, and the Technical Manager of the HEAT-SHIELD project. Dr. Samoutis is an Associate Professor at the University of Nicosia Medical School.

You can view the video by clicking here.

The HEAT-SHIELD project aims in addressing the negative effects of climate change, i.e., increasing workplace temperature, on its working population. The effects of heat exposure include productivity loss in many jobs, and HEAT-SHIELD investigates this issue and its prevention in different sectors. In addition, heat strain as a result of the increased workplace temperature creates health risks to the workers of the EU.

To address these issues, HEAT-SHIELD focuses on providing adaptation strategies for the five major industries of the EU and its workers: manufacturing, construction, transportation, tourism, and agriculture. Together, these industries represent 40% of the EU’s GDP and 50% of its workforce. Thus, by ensuring the health of the workforce, we can also shield our economy from the negative effects of climate change.

The HEAT-SHIELD project is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No 668786.

Effects of High vs. Low Glycemic Index of Post-Exercise Meals on Sleep and Exercise Performance: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Counterbalanced Polysomnographic Study

The aim of the current study was to investigate the effect of the glycemic index of post-exercise meals on sleep quality and quantity, and assess whether those changes could affect the next day’s exercise performance. Following a baseline/familiarization phase, 10 recreationally trained male volunteers (23.2 ± 1.8 years) underwent two double-blinded, randomized, counterbalanced crossover trials. In both trials, participants performed sprint interval training (SIT) in the evening. Post-exercise, participants consumed a meal with a high (HGI) or low (LGI) glycemic index. Sleep parameters were assessed by a full night polysomnography (PSG). The following morning, exercise performance was evaluated by the countermovement jump (CMJ) test, a visual reaction time (VRT) test and a 5-km cycling time trial (TT). Total sleep time (TST) and sleep efficiency were greater in the HGI trial compared to the LGI trial (p < 0.05), while sleep onset latency was shortened by four-fold (p < 0.05) and VRT decreased by 8.9% (p < 0.05) in the HGI trial compared to the LGI trial. The performance in both 5-km TT and CMJ did not differ between trials. A moderate to strong correlation was found between the difference in TST and the VRT between the two trials (p < 0.05). In conclusion, this is the first study to show that a high glycemic index meal, following a single spring interval training session, can improve both sleep duration and sleep efficiency, while reducing in parallel sleep onset latency. Those improvements in sleep did not affect jumping ability and aerobic endurance performance. In contrast, the visual reaction time performance increased proportionally to sleep improvements.

Authors: Angelos Vlahoyiannis, George Aphamis, Eleni Andreou, George Samoutis , Giorgos K. Sakkas and Christoforos D. Giannaki 

For more information, click here.

Implementing shared-decision-making for diabetes care across country settings: What really matters to people?

Growing evidence of improved clinical outcomes and patient/professional satisfaction supports shared-decision-making (SDM) services as an effective primary care interventions for diabetes. However, only a few countries have actually adopted them (e.g. England). In other European countries (e.g. Cyprus) there is awareness that patients play a crucial role in decision-making, and SDM services could be considered as innovative strategies to promote the actual implementation of patient rights legislation and strengthen primary care.

Encouraging compassion through teaching and learning: a case study in Cyprus

Journal of Compassionate Health Care: Encouraging compassion through teaching and learning: a case study in Cyprus

Sue Shea, George Samoutis, Robin Wynyard, Andreas Samoutis, Christos Lionis, Andreas Anastasiou, Alice Araujo, Alexia Papageorgiou and Renos Papadopoulos

Published: 22 October 2016

Encouraging compassion through teaching and learning: a case study in Cyprus


Background: It has been suggested that the biomedical approach towards healthcare professional training may neglect the humanistic nature and personal values of care. As such, discussions with regard to the importance of introducing compassion training into undergraduate programmes and throughout professional practice are of interest. Within this paper, we report on a compassionate care programme designed for, and delivered to, healthcare professionals and managerial/administrative staff at a private hospital in Limassol, Cyprus.

Case description: Six modules were developed, each of a 6 h duration. Each module was delivered twice to two separate groups of participants. Participants included 60 healthcare professionals along with 5 managerial and administrative staff. Using a range of innovative teaching methods and activities, the programme covered a number of issues relevant to compassion including patient centred care, therapeutic relationships, empathy, cultural awareness, conflict resolution, and advanced communication skills. The programme was evaluated using both qualitative and quantitative methods.

Discussion: Quantitative and qualitative feedback demonstrated high satisfaction and interest in the programme. Likewise, attending managerial and administrative staff considered the programme important for quality improvement and organizational culture change. Our findings demonstrate that programmes covering the topic of compassion are welcomed by both healthcare professionals and managerial/administrative staff. The impact of compassionate care training will be assessed effectively through a future longitudinal study.

Keywords: Compassion, Education, Teaching methods, Organizational culture.

Encouraging compassion through teaching and learning: a case study in Cyprus

Development and evaluation of person-centred care services: do not forget compassion!

Participants to The BMJ’s roundtable debate “How can we get better at providing patient centred care?” report that medical care must show people “dignity, compassion and respect.” But for it to be person-centred services must also be well coordinated and structured in a way that supports and empowers people to take charge of their health and long term conditions...


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