Chief Dental Officers from all over Europe met in Vienna

Vienna, 12-13th November 2018

The Council of European Chief Dental Officers (CECDO) autumn-meeting 2018 took place in Vienna at the invitation of the Austrian Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs, Health and Consumer protection.

This was a joint meeting with the Chief Medical Officers and the Chief Nursing Officers. Stefan Schreck, Head of the unit “Health Programme and Chronic Diseases”, gave an opening address highlighting the role of the EU in supporting the Member States.

The theme of the meeting was “Healthcare responses to public health challenges – organisational strategies for improving health literacy, tackling antimicrobial resistance and supporting vulnerable groups”. In two key notes the scene was set: Anna Cichowska Myrup from WHOEuro gave WHO´s perspective on public health challenges and health system responses. Herwig Ostermann, general manager from the Austrian Public Health institute gave insight about the public health issues within the Austrian healthcare reform process. Health literacy was the topic of the first session. Ilona Kickbusch (Careum) presented the importance of health literacy in healthcare as it contributes to better patient outcomes and patient self management. Jürgen Pelikan (University Vienna) then showed how systems and organisational strategies can strengthen health literacy in healthcare. The session ended with a panel discussion as to what doctors, dentists and nurses can do to contribute to better health literacy and why they should do so.

As a tool to support more collaboration between professions the integrated education of health professions was highlighted. The second session highlighted the topic of tackling antimicrobial resistance in health care systems and organisations.

Three keynote lectures were given about the contribution of surveillance systems, the implementation of national antimicrobial stewardship programs and multi-resistant bugs. The final session of the first day highlighted examples for managing and addressing the needs of vulnerable groups through systems and organisational adaptation.

Margie Taylor, CECDO President presented the systems for oral health care for (frail) elderly people in Scotland. The morning of the second day was devoted to the topic of building systematic healthcare capacity to better respond to public health challenges. Matthias Wismar (European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies) gave examples from EU member States how systems and organisational capacities for public health can be strengthened. This was followed by the example of
the Health Promoting Hospitals and the experience of an Austrian hospital with the antibiotic stewardship programme. In four parallel workshops along the topics of the four plenary sessions next steps towards more public health in healthcare were discussed.

In the afternoon CECDO held its Business Meeting. Margie Taylor, whose term as CECDO President ends in December 2018 was thanked warmly for her dedication and contributions to promote better oral health in Europe. Lene Vilstrup, CDO Denmark, will take over the position of CECDO President in January 2019. Gabriele Sax, CDO Austria, was appointed as President elect.

The CECDO thanks the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs, Health and Consumer protection for hosting the meeting. The organisers were congratulated on their programme to promote integrated working.

The next joint meeting will take place in Bucharest on March 21 and 22.