Project TO-066 “Transplantation and Physical Activity”
In the framework of the activities carried out by the CD-P-TO, the Council of Europe Committee on organ donation and Transplantation, the expert of the Italian National Transplant Centre conducted in 2014 the TO-066 project “Transplantation and Physical Activity”, which had as main topic the evaluation of the present situation among the Council of europe countries about the existence of national project or programs on the quality of life of solid organ transplanted patients focusing on physical activity.
A questionnaire has been circulated among the 47 Council of Europe countries and data collected from 18 of these. Results showed that:
- although follow-up data for transplanted patients are registered and monitored in all the countries surveyed there are no general national rules on how and what to measure apart from standard clinical parameters, blood values, immunosuppression levels, and general health status.
- Physical activity was found to be recognised as an added value but is not regularly included in most of the programs.
- Physiotherapy is prescribed by National Health Systems when needed, with some countries providing a few weeks of rehabilitation after liver, heart and lung transplantation.
- No funding is provided for further physical activity as a means of improving quality of life of transplanted patients.
While the importance of physical activity is widely recognized, the majority of National Health Systems have not yet been able to develop a system for promoting physical activity in general and for transplanted patients in particular.
Based on this results a working group composed by the member of the Competent Authorities of Austria, Bulgaria and Slovenia, leaded by the Italian National Transplant Centre and supported by the experts of the Italian protocol “Transplant… and now it’s time for sport” prepared on behalf of the Council of Europe a Position Paper on Transplantation and physical activity.
The paper was approved by the Committee of Experts during the 15th CD-P-TO meeting held in Santiago de Compostela in March 2015 and published on the Newsletter Transplant vol.20, 2015.