New SAP-E Data release on European Stroke Awareness Day 2024

Europe takes small steps forward to improve stroke care and support, but too many inequities still persist

The latest data from the Stroke Action Plan for Europe (SAP-E) Stroke Service Tracker (SST) shed light on Europe’s journey toward better stroke care and support. While there are positive signs of progress, the report also reveals persistent gaps and challenges, highlighting the continued need for nationally targeted interventions.

The SST, which examines 12 key areas of stroke care improvement, shows positive strides in meeting SAP-E targets and improving acute treatment, organisation and quality control of services. Several countries, including the Republic of Moldovia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Sweden, and Wales are making commendable progress.

However, access to stroke unit care, follow-up and life after stroke services and support remains uneven. Disparities in care provision across regions underscore the need for targeted interventions to ensure equitable access to quality care and support for all affected by stroke.

The data underscore the urgent need for national stakeholders to address these gaps. By leveraging this information, countries must implement tailored stroke strategies to ensure that everyone affected by stroke receives timely, high-quality care and support, regardless of their location or socioeconomic status.

We urge all European countries to continue to harness the power of their SST data to bridge gaps in their stroke care. Let’s prioritise action and ensure every stroke patient receives the care they deserve.

Read the joint statement in full.

SAP-E data release on ESAD 2023

New data collected as part of the Stroke Action Plan for Europe (SAP-E) Stroke Service Tracker reveals the gross inequity of access to care and support for stroke patients and stroke survivors across Europe.

Key findings from the data show:

  • There is inequity in access to stroke care throughout Europe, and insufficient access to care in many high-income countries. This is the case for acute care, and to an even larger degree for rehabilitation and life after stroke support.
  • National and/or regional data is crucial in planning, organising and documenting access to care. However, the majority of European countries lack both the national or regional registries to monitor key information on stroke and the National Stroke Plans to anticipate needs and provide standards for care.
  • The burden of stroke is predicted to increase but despite this, most countries do not have a plan for primordial or primary prevention.

“To reduce the burden of stroke, with its grave effects on both individuals and societies, governments must prioritise implementing an adequate organisation of medical and support services through the establishment of National Stroke Plans and setting up national and regional registries to monitor quality, outcomes, and access to stroke care.”

— Prof. Hanne Christensen, Chair of the SAP-E

“This data shows a woeful lack of equitable access to stroke care and support across Europe. This is not good enough. Our governments must do more to prevent stroke, and when they do occur, ensure that every citizen has access to physical and emotional care and support in hospital as well as the ongoing long-term support that each stroke survivor and carer needs when they return home.”

— Arlene Wilkie, Director General of SAFE

Urgent action is needed by each country to implement and fund a national stroke plan that covers the entire chain of stroke care, from prevention and acute care to rehabilitation and long-term support.

Read the full statement

SAP-E Highlights 2022

As we begin 2023 with enthusiasm for the work accomplished and yet to come, we would like to take the opportunity to reflect on the journey we undertook last year.

The SAP-E Steering Committee is pleased to present this round-up of all the activities that took place for SAP-E in 2022.

Read the full newsletter here and sign up here to receive future SAP-E updates right in your inbox.

SAP-E Chairs in an interview with touchNEUROLOGY

In the video interview with the magazine touchNEUROLOGY, the Chairs of the Stroke Action Plan for Europe Steering Committee, Prof. Hanne Christensen, Dr. Francesca Romana Pezzella and Arlene Wilkie highlight the goals of the action plan and discuss its planned targets to reduce the burden of stroke through improvement of care.

Questions (part one):

  1. What do you consider to be the major unmet needs in stroke care across Europe? (0:48)
  2. Could you give us a brief overview of the Stroke Action Plan for Europe (SAP-E) and its overall goal? (3:27)

Questions (part two):

  1. What are the targets of SAP-E for 2030? (0:48)
  2. How will individual organisations be supported to achieve these targets? (2:10)
  3. What have been the achievements of the Stroke Action Plan for Europe to date? (7:44)

Interview and filming supported by Touch Medical Media. Interview conducted by Katey Gabrysch.

Watch part one

Improving stroke prevention and care across Europe

In a bid to provide better care to patients and implement national strategies to reduce the risk of strokes, we hear from the European Stroke Organisation as it begins to roll out its largest stroke project ever undertaken, The Stroke Action Plan for Europe.

To read the full article please click here and go to page 174.

A unified European action plan on stroke

Launched in May 2018, the Stroke Action Plan for Europe (SAP-E) 2018–2030—a collaborative project by the European Stroke Organisation (ESO) and the patient organisation Stroke Alliance For Europe (SAFE)—tries to fill these gaps in stroke care. The ambitious SAP-E aims to address the entire chain of care, and has established targets across seven domains (primary prevention, organisation of stroke services, management of acute stroke, secondary prevention, rehabilitation, evaluation of stroke outcome and quality assessment, and life after stroke) along with priorities for translational stroke research.

To read the full article please click here.