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INTRODUCTION

REDISSEC is built on three major issues: the challenge of managing the phenomenon of chronicity, the need for more and better information and the obligation to increase research capacity in health policies and services in Spain.

The challenge of chronicity

Chronic diseases (CD) are by far the leading cause of death in Europe and Spain, representing more than two thirds of all deaths. The economic implications of such disease burden are also notable.

Despite recent advances, the majority of CD health care is still structured around acute exacerbations of the disease. For this reason, management of chronic diseases is increasingly considered a major concern for policy makers and researchers.

Need for more and better information to support decision making

Probably the best elements that set the current healthcare environment are: the concern of governments and companies for the increasing spending on health; the existence of large variations in medical practice that are not explained by differences in morbidity of populations; concerns about the effectiveness , safety and efficiency of new technologies and drugs, and the quality of medical practice and health organizations; the revolution in information technology and communication, along with the promise of their impact on the health area; and the increasing participation of patients in clinical decisions.

Improving the research capacity in health policies and services in chronic disease in Spain

The Health Services Research in Spain has grown over the past 20 years, mainly on small research groups. Although some previous efforts may be highlighted, it was not until 2004 when the health services research appeared as a priority research area in the National Research Plan 2004-2007.

REDISSEC capacity is based on previous experience of collaborative research in most of the participating groups. This partnership has allowed building an initiative composed of 14 research groups from nine Autonomous Communities. REDISSEC is aware of its potential in terms of capacity building in health services research on chronic diseases; however, REDISSEC is also aware of the numerous research questions and knowledge gaps that will require for additional networking, at national and international level.

© REDISSEC 2013. All rights reserved.

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