Why CLIMOS is developing an Early warning systems?
Climate change has and will continue to transform the flora and fauna of Europe, and along with this, hosts of new diseases are likely to spread to domestic animals and to people. It is also likely that diseases spread by sand flies, such as leishmaniasis, will rise. Sand flies that have become endemic in southern Europe are already migrating to the European North as the climate is becoming warmer.
According to WHO approximately 700.000 to 1 million new cases occur annually, mostly outside Europe. Some forms of leishmaniasis can be fatal, especially to those with weaker immune systems, and others are disfiguring and painful. Currently there is no vaccine for human Leishmaniasis. Treatments can help those infected to manage symptoms, but one can never really get rid of it once being infected, especially for dogs.
This is precisely where the CLIMOS consortium takes centre stage. Our mission involves the development of an advanced Early warning systems (EWS). By comprehensively understanding the factors influencing exposure to Leishmaniasis and other sand fly-borne pathogens, we aim to revolutionise preventive measures and contribute significantly to public health.
Why are we building scenarios?
Early warning systems (EWS) for healthcare management can be a useful tool for managing epidemiological diseases such as leishmaniasis, where prevention is the best and sometimes the only line of defence.
An Early Warning System is a warning system that can be implemented as a chain of information communication systems that allows an early identification of hazards. But what good is an Early Warning System if it is not adopted by healthcare management, used effectively for civil protection, and trusted by those it aims to protect?
The CLIMOS Consortium undertakes “foresight research” to understand what will affect the adoption of a warning system depending on future social, economic, political, technological, legal, ethical and environmental conditions. It will develop scenarios to understand how such Early Warning Systems can be effectively deployed to managed healthcare risks of sand fly-borne diseases. Scenarios are plausible visions or views of how the future can look. They are stories, not predictions, that can be use by decision-makers to anticipate unintended consequences and thus determine their best response for future decisions.
Foresight workshops will take place with the wide range of civilians and officials that need to coalescence in the adoption and effective use of such a system, such as health ministries, civil protection governance systems, veterinarians, industry representatives and the public. We seek to understand the motivations, barriers and drivers for its adoption from different stakeholder perspectives, to propose the right mix of actions that will lead to its use for the greater societal good.
Led by Trilateral Research and Karlsruhe Institut for Technology, the first scenario planning workshop gathered insights from the interdisciplinary team of the CLIMOS consortium using the advanced facilitation capabilities of miro boards. The consortium discussed how the interactions between various conditions will intensify the need for the deployment of the EWS in Europe and the motivation of adopting it as part of healthcare management. We also sought to understand the users and decision-makers that should be involved in its adoption and use, their skills, capabilities, inclinations, and motivations. Finally, we looked at the conditions that will affect public trust in the Early Warning System.
In the months to come, we will streamline our current understanding into a storyline that can be easily communicated to a wider audience. We will invite experts and the public to challenge and complement our understanding. This will help us to build deeper insights into how we can foster systemic change that can help us better protect people and our best friends.
If you are interested in how we can better manage and prevent leishmaniasis we are eager to engage with you in one of our future scenario planning workshops. Please leave us your contact details in this form and we will approach you for an initial discussion.