• Our work

    Eurodiaconia links diaconal actors to examine social needs, develop ideas and influence policies impacting Poverty and Social Exclusion, Social and Health Care Services and the Future of Social Europe.

    Eurodiaconia also provides a platform for transnational networking and best practice sharing.  


  • Our vision

    As the leading network for diaconal work in Europe, we look to develop dialogue and partnership between members and influence and engage with the wider society.  We do this to enable inclusion, care and empowerment of the most vulnerable and excluded and ensure dignity for all.


  • Our goals

    We aim to see a positive social change in Europe through:

    Praxis, enabling membership engagement and partnerships

    Advocacy, creating a network of competence to impact policies at European and national level

    Identity and values, supporting the development of approaches and thinking on Diaconia in Europe today


Calendar Wednesday, March 04, 2015
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Healthy ageing and long-term care

Eurodiaconia runs a network on Healthy Ageing and Long-term Care for members to engage in policy discussions related to ageing and care for older people, feeding into Eurodiaconia's advocacy work, and to share experiences and best practice in care for older people.

In the context of demographic change Eurodiaconia has focussed on services for older people. With Members Eurodiaconia drew up a policy paper in 2009 outlining the challenges members see in the field and proposing recommendations. This was developed and revised in 2014.

Key Eurodiaconia documents:

In 2012 a publication entitled "Ageing Well: Together" was launched which features reflections from Eurodiaconia and Heinz K. Becker MEP, recommendations and projects and services from members focusing on ensuring social inclusion for older people.

The European Commission published a working paper on long-term care in 2013, a briefing can be found below:

Eurodiaconia has been involved in the Coalition for the European Year of Active Ageing and Solidarity between generations 2012 (EY2012) working for a stronger recognition of the role of social and health services in ensuring active ageing, independent living. Eurodiaconia contributed to the coalition's brochure which makes recommendations for different types of stakeholders on how to promote active ageing and intergenerational solidarity. The Roadmap provides an overview of of activities that the Coalition commit to undertaking in 2012 to ensure that all  relevant stakeholders will be actively involved in the  implementation of the  EY2012 and the European Union will do its outmost to complement and support Member States’ actions aiming at creating an Age-Friendly European Union  by 2020.

To learn more about healthy ageing and elderly care work in Eurodiaconia, please contact Laura Jones on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Report from conference on quality integrated care now online

6 January 2015

useful2 for docEurodiaconia, AGE Platform Europe and EuroHealthNet co-organised a half day conference on the 18th November 2014 hosted by the Committee of the Regions entitled Supporting quality integrated care: Policy and practice at local, regional and national levels. Experts from European institutions, service users and service providers spoke of the challenges in ensuring integrated and coordinated care services, the impact this has and how challenges can be overcome.

The report is now online and can be downloaded here.

Please find below the presentations of various speakers:

Judy Triantafillou, What does integrated care mean for individuals? 50+Hellas

NHS Scotland, NHS 24, integration for falls prevention, Marlene Harkis

The MAIA action-oriented method for the integration of long-term care services, La Caisse nationale de solidarité pour l'autonomie, France, Dr Olivier Dupont

Dr Viktoria Stein, Health Services Delivery Programme of the Division of Health Systems and Public Health, WHO Regional Office

Jorge Pinto Antunes, European Commission, DG Health and Consumers, Innovation for Health and Consumers

Further information:

Eurodiaconia's analysis of the Joint Report On Adequate Social Protection For Long-Term Care Needs

AGE Platform Europe's analysis

Integrated care in practice seminar minutes and presentations available

6 January 2015

On 2 December EUREGHA (an organisation of European Regional and Local Health Authorities) organised its annual conference, which Eurodiaconia attended. The theme of the 2014 conference was “Integrated Care in Practice”, and gathered speakers from the European Commission, the World Health Organisation and the International Foundation for Integrated Care. Interesting local and regional models of integrated care from Spain, Italy and Sweden were also presented and discussed. A number of iissues were raised that echoed the discussions in the conference Eurodiaconia co-organised on Integrated Care in November. (For more information on that please see here)

The minutes of the conference can be found here and the speakers' presentations are available here. For any questions, please contact the EUREGHA Secretariat, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . 

Experts discuss how to develop quality integrated care at conference co-organised by Eurodiaconia

27 November 2014

Eurodiaconia, AGE Platform Europe and EuroHealthNet co-organised a half day conference hosted by the Committee of the Regions last week entitled Supporting quality integrated care: Policy and practice at local, regional and national levels. Experts from European institutions, service users and service providers spoke of the challenges in ensuring integrated and coordinated care services, the impact this has and how challenges can be overcome. Arnoldas Abramavicius, member of the CoR welcomed participants, and along with Heather Roy, stressed the need for sufficient investment in social and health systems to enable high quality long-term care. Ms Roy outlined barriers to integrated care as seen in the background briefing note for the conference which can be found here.

Interventions from Hellas50+ and Eurocarers included real life stories where care was not coordinated and where persons in need of care were left without it, and where carers suffered trying to get the services their familiy members needed. Informal carers should be acknowledged, trained and fully integrated with care teams and must receive comprehensive and effective support. A good practice example from Athens from an NGO showed how a local initiative played an essential and holistic role in supporting families and persons needing care to access the care they needed.

Moving to integrated care systems takes time, and there is a need to build co-responsibility and partnerships among stakeholders to promote and develop integrated care systems and services. It was noted that there is often the need for strong leadership to implement integrated care solutions, which is often lacking at the higher political level. This means that many initiatives are local or regional, are not mainstreamed, leading to a piecemeal approach.

The potential of technology was highlighted, particularly in the presentation of the SmartCare project, as implemented by NHS24 Scotland. Key features of the technology that they are developing to facilitate coordination are a Person Centred Approach, Co-production, Developing the market for technology and focusing on outcomes for the service user.

The importance of the human dimension and social interaction was also stressed. This was a feature of the French MAIA model. The model is based on the following axes: Coordination between institutions, A single entry point, Multidimensional standardized assessment tools, Individualized service plans, Shared clinical files, Case management. Quality of life had improved for older people going through this model rather than facing a fragmented, unclear system.

The WHO is developing a Regional Framework for Action towards coordinated/integrated health services delivery and presented preliminary findings. One driver for change identified was the need for conditions supporting creativity, such as ensuring good research, organising study visits, sufficient resources and piloting of methods.

On the side of the European Commission, Jorge Pinto Antunes presented the European Innovation Partnership for Active and Healthy Ageing and Fritz von Nordheim-Nielsen presented the SPC-Commission Joint Report On Adequate Social Protection For Long-Term Care Needs. Eurodiaconia launched its analysis of and recommendations on the joint report, which can be found here.

The organisers will draft a report in the coming week which will be available with the presentations on this website. Future cooperation on the topic will be planned and Eurodiaconia will also develop recommendations on integrated care.


Invitation and registration: Supporting quality integrated care conference, 18/11, Brussels

Eurodiaconia, AGE Platform Europe and EuroHealthNet are pleased to invite you to a half day conference hosted by the Committee of the Regions in Brussels on the 18th November 2014, 14.00-17.30: Supporting quality integrated care: Policy and practice at local, regional and national levels

We would like to reflect on the benefits and challenges of developing integrated care services, promote mutual learning and examine what further work could be carried out at a pan-European level in this field.

People who have multiple care needs usually receive health and social care services from different providers and in different care settings. Health and social care providers have experienced that this often happens without appropriate co-ordination or a holistic approach, leading to problems for the service user, family and increased costs to care systems.

Although Integrated Care as a concept has been the subject of research and discussion for over ten years, we believe that it deserves more attention as we believe that there iis still much scope for improvement for persons in need of care.

Testimonies from the service user perspective will be given and examples of good practice from across Europe will be shared. A panel of representatives from European level institutions will respond to the examples and discuss potential next steps at European level. Recommendations in terms of policy actions and promoting mutual learning will be drawn out in discussions with the audience.

As the EU population ages, more people will require care and more cost pressure will be put on social protection systems. Integrating and coordinated care is one method  to meet these challenges, improving the efficiency and effectiveness of care delivery. This was highlighted as an area where governments need to take action in the

"Joint Report on adequate social protection for long-term care needs in an ageing society", endorsed by Employment and Social Affairs ministers in June this year.

For more information please see the draft agenda here and the background briefing note here.

Capacity for the meeting has now been reached so registration is closed. Please contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you would like to go on the waiting list.

Photo credits: Kristian Badendyck Fjeldstad, Church City Mission of Oslo; Slezská diakonie

Conference discusses how to promote and develop palliative care

16 October 2014

On the 15th October Eurodiaconia participated in a conference entitled Palliative Care 2020, the final event for two EU funded research projects, impact and EUROIMPACT. EUROIMPACT trained researchers in the field of palliative care and impact looked at the implementation of quality indicators in palliative care. The projects jointly developed the 2014 European Declaration on Palliative Care, ten evidence-based policy recommendations which was the basis for the discussions. .

Numerous speakers talked of the need to build understanding among both the public and professionals about the scope and meaning of palliative care. It should not just be seen as care for the dying but about improving the well-being of persons with chronic diseases, which may last many years, and is not just relevant in a person’s final months. One participant talked about the success of a campaign in Ireland with the approach: say palliative care, think quality of life, whilst in the Czech Republic the interactive website http://www.thinkaboutdeath.org/ (a joint project of a hospice and a creative agency) seemed to be successful in reaching out to young people.

A number of interventions mentioned the fact that there is a lack of focus on research in palliative care, and that there is need for a broader evidence base to support different approaches. Other fields of medical research benefit from much higher resources but may affect fewer people than those that would benefit from palliative care. Eurodiaconia pointed out that there is a wider need to examine which models of integration of social and health care work when, and that integration must be addressed at all levels, from local level to the ministerial level. Further research can also provide more robust important economic justifications for investing in palliative care, to build on existing findings that palliative care often reduces the need for acute care and therefore is less expensive.

The European Commission presented ongoing work on producing guidelines on cancer care, which will include a section on palliative care. A few experts spoke about the importance of drawing expertise gained from cancer research and treatment into other sectors. The debate around whether it was better to focus on palliative care as a separate field or rather to ensure integration in other fields was not conclusive, but it was felt that it should be addressed again; does one approach have a bigger impact? In terms of outcome indicators it was stressed that attitudes of some professionals needed to change in favour of using them, but that they should also be useful to inform service provision. Quality indicators should also include measurements of spiritual care.

Participants agreed that palliative care should be integrated into medical educational curricula as well as on the job learning. In addition to knowledge and skills, one expert spoke of the importance of ensuring positive attitudes of staff towards palliative care. Building skills in risk management andcomplexity was also raised as a need. There is still the need to take a more user or patient-centred approach to care and develop personalised care plans, and do more advanced care planning anticipating future needs.

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