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Over the past 30 years, the Division for Therapeutic Education for Chronic Diseases has developed a humanistic and innovative psychoeducational approach, aimed at patients with chronic diseases. This approach has improved their quality of life and reduced complications by 80%.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has recognized this approach, which has become known as "therapeutic education", and the division has been a WHO collaborating center since 1983.
The Geneva University Hospitals group provides broad support for the interdisciplinary team of clinicians in this division. The Faculty of Medicine of Geneva also provides a continuing education program in therapeutic education, which results in the award of a university diploma. Research into metabolism, hormones, psychology, education and art therapy are supported by various national, European and private foundations.
The many international collaborations that have been developed by the division mean that teams can carry out research in all areas and adapt research to suit patients with obesity, diabetes and eating disorders.
The Division allows all aspects of basic, clinical and psychoeducational research to be pursued. This research is directly applied to patient care, in order to improve quality of life and therapeutic compliance, and to reduce complications. With this in mind, the division offers multidisciplinary research that is innovative and unique, both in its diversity and in its clinical applicability.
The teams have been working in diabetes and obesity research for over 25 years, which has led to today's improved understanding of the mechanisms underlying weight loss resistance. Research into metabolism has revealed that not all calories are made equal, because of how individuals save energy, because of lack of autonomic nervous system regulation and because of insulin resistance. This weight loss resistance is also being studied in order to improve behavior changes in psychology, education and even art therapy. Motivation to achieve behavior change is a major challenge in the clinical setting, and research carried out by this division also helps to provide innovation in terms of new psychoeducational approaches.
The division's research programs focus on the following areas:
- Metabolism and obesity research (FR)
- Micronutrition research (FR)
- Educational research (FR)
- "Obesity and art therapy" research (FR)
- "Diabetic Foot” Research (FR)
- Online self-treatment program (FR)
This work has led to many publications (FR).