GURULO improved service infrastructure and workshop-network for developing equipment assisting employment and independence of people with reduced mobility
MEREK is a national public organisation active in the complex rehabilitation of people with physical disabilities. MEREK launched its EU-funded national programme, GURULO (Rolling) to deliver solution to the following problems: 1) the assistive products were not personalized meeting individual needs of end-users; 2) the waiting time for repair was long, services were hard to reach in the countryside; 3) supply and service for children’s products was rudimentary; 4) number of sports assistive products were low; 5) lacking rental of products temporarily needed; 5) quality of services was low in general. GURULO delivered innovative solution to these challenges by the establishment of a national network of regional workshops to implement innovative assistive technology, to repair, develop or improve special sports equipment, and to make products and services available to the target group. End-users were involved to meet personal needs enhancing the independence of people with disabilities. This supply of suitable goods increased personal independence at home and at work, and enabled family members to meet their home care obligations easier. It raised awareness of people with disabilities to make use of the rehabilitation services of the workshops and the members of the network. Delivery of the Home Care innovation was strengthened by cooperation among the public body (MEREK), end-users (patients, families, professionals) and the staff of the manufacturing/repairing workshops.
The total budget of the 1st phase project (09/2008-12/2010) was EUR 5.0 M.
The total budget of the 2nd phase project (07/2013-12/2015) was EUR 4.3 M.
The programme was executed by a 2-3 management staff people and 5-10 experts and 20-30 staff at the workshops.
Evidence of success
Establish 7 workshops providing service for 4-500 patients.
Long-term employment of min 30 people with disabilities after complex training.
Visiting 4000 disabled clients to customize with permanent disabilities.
Partnerships with rehabilitation and sports organisations, patient organizations for disabilities ensuring the dissemination and sustainability of services.
Dissemination of new methodologies to rehabilitation experts through nationwide training programme in all the 19 counties.
Sustainability of operation after the closure of the maintenance period of the ESIF projects shall be solved, e.g. relevant groups such as health care insurance (fund/companies), health and social care and sports decision maker groups and relevant political groups should be involved.
Potential for learning or transfer
GORULO contributed to the reduction of the risk of hospitalization and facilitated Home Care by the delivery of technical, production, logistic and sales innovations enabling both cared patients and family members return to the labour market sooner. Locomotor physicians and physiotherapists carried out surveys with the involvement of technicians on the basis of the FNO (Functional Ability, Disability and Health International Classification) methodology with the aim to fully serve the clients' needs - to co-operate with their therapists - personalization of their aids - to return to the labour market. The logistics rental centres were designed to provide tools assisting home-care and day-to-day living in a cost-effective rental system to those who need mobility aids in the short-term.
The idea could be transferable for example to social and/or healthcare service or home care segment and sports clubs, medical devices and sports aids manufacturers and distributors.