Across both national and international contexts a central aim of health strategies is to enable and empower patients and the public to manage and maintain their health and well-being. It large part, this reflects the growing recognition that people are often the most knowledgeable experts about their own health and well-being, and therefore should be active partners rather than passive recipients. As the World Health Organization has observed, “health is a state of physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. Thus, health is more than just organised systems of healthcare in the form of hospitals, clinics, medicines and professionals.
The Smart Patients project, funded by Erasmus +, was designed to engage and enable the public to become Smart Patients by providing free and freely accessible materials to support them in developing self-confidence, knowledge and understanding around health and well-being. The outputs are three modules – Prevent, Empower, Participate – that each contain a series of submodules on a diversity of topics such as nutrition, mental health, work/life balance and engaging with health professionals, as well as many more. The modules are available online and as a mobile application, facilitating flexible, easy, anytime and anywhere access. The platform also contains user stories and includes a forum to facilitate interaction. The modules are available in a range of languages including English, German, Slovenian, Greek, Portuguese, Croatian, Slovakian, Arabic and Pashto, all of which can be accessed at - https://smart-patients.eu/main/toolbox.php