Barcelona Welcomes the Developing Bodies

1.1 million Euro grant to develop a device for rapid diagnosis of respiratory infections at primary care. This is the amount of money given by the European Union to flight against respiratory infections in small and medium-sized hospitals.

The bodies and institutions involved in this scientific and technological research met today in Barcelona, at Hotel Vilamarí, to develop a diagnostic point-of-care instrument that will permit health professionals to better control respiratory infection pathogens that are causative agents of illnesses such as pneumonia or pertussis. These infections may cause serious problems specifically in children.

• Respiratory infections kill millions of children worldwide each year and are the leading cause of hospitalisation in developed countries

• Currently, physicians either prescribe treatment empirically without having confirmed whether the infection is caused by a virus or bacteria or ship patients’ samples to specialised core laboratories for diagnosis, which is costly and time-consuming

• Timely diagnosis followed by specific treatment is crucial for improving recovery of patients

Infectious diseases cause 9 million deaths of children fewer than 5 years worldwide and are also the primary cause of hospital admissions in developed countries. Initially the device will target two major infectious agents: pneumococcus and pertussis. Only pneumococcus is the leading cause of pneumonia in the world and kills more children than HIV, malaria and measles together.