Satellite photography from the European Space Agency, with permission

©2019 by Health Psychology Center.

 

HOSPITALS AND HEALTHCARE

Improving quality and safety in the hospital: The link between organizational culture, burnout and quality of care (ORCAB) –2009-2014

The project is conducted in cooperation between 9 European countries: Greece, Turkey, Portugal, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Macedonia, Ireland and UK. Its aim is to benchmark the organizational and individual factors that impact on quality of care and patient safety, and design bottom-up interventions that both increase quality of care and health professionals’ well being; to develop a network for hospital managers and associated stakeholders for the communication of interventions aimed at improving quality of care in hospitals. The project includes a qualitative study (focus-groups and interviews with health professionals and patients; ethnographic observations in the hospitals), an extensive survey and action research.

 

REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH

Psychosocial aspects of infertility and assisted reproductive technologies: 2004 – present

The Health Psychology Research Center is conducting on-going work on the discourses and experiences of infertility and assisted reproduction in Bulgaria.  Following the results of the first study on psychosocial aspects, social discourses and women's resistive voices towards  involuntary childlessness in Bulgaria, we continued with research on the social and psychological  meanings of assisted reproduction, The aim of this research is to discuss the experiences of women facing infertility and infertility treatment in Bulgaria, and provider’s opinions regarding treatment. We have also covered ethical aspects of assisted reproduction, as well as the policies and regulations regarding use of assisted reproductive technologies. An additional study with healthcare providers of ARTs was conducted in order to provide information on the perceptions of medical specialists to the processes that are taking place in the country and their attitudes to the changing regulations.
Funded by the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI), USA

 

MENTAL HEALTH

Enhancing Psychiatric Genetic Counselling, Testing, and Training in Europe;   EnGagE) COST Science and Technology Network Program (2018 - present)


Improving quality and safety in the hospital: The link between organizational culture, burnout and quality of care (ORCAB) –2009-2014;  Seventh Framework Programme Project

The project is conducted in cooperation between 9 European countries: Greece, Turkey, Portugal, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Macedonia, Ireland and UK. Its aim is to benchmark the organizational and individual factors that impact on quality of care and patient safety, and design bottom-up interventions that both increase quality of care and health professionals’ well being; to develop a network for hospital managers and associated stakeholders for the communication of interventions aimed at improving quality of care in hospitals. The project includes a qualitative study (focus-groups and interviews with health professionals and patients; ethnographic observations in the hospitals), an extensive survey and action research.

 

CANCER PREVENTION

Psychosocial, Political and Gendered Dimensions of Preventive Technologies in Bulgaria and Romania: HPV Vaccine Implementation - 2010-2012


 The objective of the study is to delineate the dimensions of the social debate being evoked in the processes of introducing the HPV vaccine in two Eastern European countries - Bulgaria and Romania (Romanian partner in the project: Department of Psychology, Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca). The perspectives of policymakers, pharmaceutical companies, health care providers and women/parents on introducing the HPV vaccine are examined through a combination of historical, documentary, media and interview analysis.


Funded by the National Council for Eurasian and East European Research (NCEEER), USA

Evaluation of the European Cervical Cancer Association (ECCA) Information Brochures – 2009-2011

The project aims to evaluate the readability, quality and reliability of four health promotion brochures, informing women about all aspects of cervical cancer prevention, and to adapt their content to the Bulgarian general public. The brochures are developed by ECCA and are translated in Bulgarian by medical specialists. The Health Psychology Research Center developed a questionnaire and methodology for evaluation of these printed materials. The brochures were assessed by Bulgarian women of different age, different educational and social status, and different ethnic and religious background. Seven group discussions were organized in cooperation with the network of community centers “Chitalishte” and conducted in different parts of the country.

Funded by ECCA- http://www.ecca.info/

Effectiveness of the Dialogue between Medical Professionals and Oncological Patients – 2009

The aim of the project was to analyze the attitudes and expectations of medical professionals and oncological patients regarding communication and to propose particular steps for improvement of the dialogue between the two groups. One hundred thirty-five medical professionals and 105 patients from different parts of the country participated in a study, inquiring into the issues of informed consent and informed choice, time for communication, responsibility for decision making, organizational difficulties, respect, self-evaluation of communicative skills, and psychological support.

Funded by the Association of Oncological Patients and Friends, Bulgaria

European Cancer Health Indicator Project 2 (EUROCHIP 2): The Action – 2004-2008  

European Cancer Health Indicator Project 3 (EUROCHIP 3): Common Action – 2008-2011


EUROCHIP focuses on fighting inequalities in cancer. Its aim is to improve information and knowledge on cancer. It will add value to each country’s and all Europe’s action through data comparison. EUROCHIP-1 (2001-2003) delivered the list of Cancer Health Indicators for the cancer domains of Prevention, Screening, and Care. EUROCHIP-2 “the Action” acted as a network of networks, agencies, institutions, policy makers, medical associations and patients groups, to promote actions aimed at reducing inequality gaps in cancer information across the EU, aiming towards a European Cancer Health Information system. With EUROCHIP-3 “Common Action” the network takes EU cancer information one step forward and it investigates 4 cancer information areas (i.e. cervical cancer screening in Eastern Europe, EU cancer registration, information on survivorship, information on cancer costs & outcome) that are binding for the cancer control strategy of the EU as a whole.

EUROCHIP-2 in Bulgaria is led by the Bulgarian National Cancer Registry; the Health Psychology Research Center cooperated to assessed the information level and readiness for implementation of organized population-based cervical cancer screening in Bulgaria by exploring the views of specialists in gynecology and oncology, health managers and policy makers. In EUROCHIP-3 the National Cancer Registry in collaboration with the Health Psychology Research Center are participating in the activities of the group for cervical cancer prevention and are responsible for the evaluation of the project

Funded by the European Commission, Public Health Programme, Health Consumer Protection, Directorate-General; & by the Public Health Executive Agency, European Commission

 

Health systems and psychosocial aspects of cervical cancer screening in Bulgaria and Romania – 2004-2010

The aim of the project is to identify the determinants of screening and to discuss their implications for the development of educational initiatives, screening programs and for increasing women’s access to the latter. The psychosocial part of the study provides information on the socioeconomic screening disparities, attitudes, and risk perception of women regarding cervical cancer screening.  The health systems’ aspect elicits the key health care system elements required for an effective implementation of cervical cancer screening. The project includes a nationally representative survey with women, in-depth interviews with medical providers, women and key informants, as well as focus groups with medical providers. It was conducted in collaboration with Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania, and EngenderHealth, USA. 
Funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation through EngenderHealth and the Alliance for Cervical Cancer Prevention

 

YOUTH

Health Behavior in School-aged Children (HBSC): a WHO affiliated study 2004 – 2018

Bulgaria joined the Health Behavior in School-aged Children (HBSC) international network in 2004. Our team includes researchers from the Health Psychology Research Center and the Institute for Population and Human Research at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences . HBSC is a unique cross-national research study, initiated in 1982, and shortly afterwards adopted by WHO as a WHO collaborative study. HBSC aims to gain new insight and increased understanding of health behaviours, risk behaviours, health outcomes, and their social context in young people aged 11, 13 and 15. 
Funded by:
The Jacobs Foundation, Switzerland (2005 – 2007)
The National Science Fund at the Ministry of Education and Science, Bulgaria (2006-2010)
The World Health Organization – Regional Office for Europe (2008)
UNICEF Bulgaria 2017-2018