THE INTERNATIONAL CONSULTATION ON INCONTINENCE, MONACO, JUNE 26-29, 2004.
Photo: Louis Denis, Ilan Gruenwald, Chye Hua Ee, Richard Millard, Richard Roberts, Carolyn Sampselle, Katherine Williams, Diane Newman - Chair of the committee on “Promotion, organisation and education in continence care."
Twenty-five expert committees evaluated the breadth and depth of the incontinence problem worldwide. They covered issues ranging from the prevalence of bladder control problems to continence promotion and to the economic and quality of life impact bladder control problems have on a local, regional, national and global level. In each committee the published evidence was reviewed and presented for discussion to the Consultation.
The goal of the Consultation is to both raise awareness and reach a consensus on universal treatment guidelines. The establishment of guidelines is a crucial step in the effort to identify and treat the millions of people currently suffering from bladder control problems throughout the world. The consultation, in addition to setting guidelines will also prioritise a research programme for the next five years.
The International Consultation on Incontinence has included a committee on “Promotion, organisation and education in continence care”. On an international basis the International Continence Society, ICS should continue to facilitate and hasten collaborations enabling developments in continence care worldwide.
At the consultation, Diane Newman, Chair of the committee on “Promotion, organisation and education in continence care”, presented the results of The 2004 National Organization Survey.
It is covering the missions and the structures of the national continence organisations, sources of funding and good examples of publicity and awareness activities. Today there are 40 organisations in 30 countries as well as “umbrella” organisations such as the Asia Pacific Continence Advisory Board to co-ordinate activities on a pan-regional basis. ICS has shared information, ideas and materials and helped new countries to get started and learn from the experiences of others.
The formation of National Continence Organisations is vital in order to provide the focal point for the development of comprehensive continence services.
The national continence organisations should provide the structure for partnerships between consumers, health care professionals and the institutions, for example hospitals and governments. Many health care systems have started to pay attention to incontinence as a serious health care issue and national governments have funded major initiatives such as the AHCPR Guidelines in the USA and the National Continence Management Strategy in Australia. The climate for continence promotion has changed, thanks mostly to the efforts of the ICS members in their different countries.
The consultation was organised by the International Consultation on Urological Diseases, the International Continence Society, the International Society of Urology and the Major International Associations of Urology and Gynecology.