International cooperation is one of BSMU areas of activity. The University is actively involved in various international projects aimed at the development of the education and healthcare system, and the solution of the most pressing issues facing humanity.
The 20th-21st centuries have witnessed an increase in the percentage of elderly people in the population structure along with the increase in life expectancy, with a significant increase in the number of long-livers. Such demographic situation in the world, including Belarus, determines the necessity of studying the mechanisms of human aging, development of gerontology, and geriatrics.
Among the ways of solving the formation and maintenance problem of the population longevity is to combine the efforts of specialists from different fields and countries. In this regard, the specialists of the University of Cagliari and Belarusian State Medical University carry out a research of the international project “Longevity, Lifestyle and Nutrition: the Importance of Education” (Sardinia, Italy-Belarus) aimed at the development of measures to solve the formation and maintenance problem of longevity in two countries. The project is implemented with the support and cooperation of the World Longevity Society and its chairperson, Roberto Pili. The research has been carried out for two years and dealt with the influence of nutrition, lifestyle, education on the aging and formation of longevity.
On June 31 and July 14, 2021, there were held webinars as part of the international project “Longevity, Lifestyle and Nutrition: the Importance of Education” and introduced the results of research, project developments. Donatella Rita Petretto, Assistant Rector for the Organization of Inclusive Education at the University of Cagliari, International Project Coordinator, Head of Research in Pedagogy, Psychology, Philosophy, played a significant role in the organization and implementation.
Irina Moroz, First Vice-Rector of BSMU, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor; Tatiana Pavlovich, Head of the Public Health and Healthcare Department, Candidate of Medical Sciences, Associate Professor; Vadim Sushinsky, Head of the General Medicine Department, Candidate of Medical Sciences, Associate Professor participated in these events. It’s worth mentioning other people who participated in the events, they were: Natalia Moroz-Vodolazhskaya, Associate Professor of the General Medicine Department, Candidate of Medical Sciences, Associate Professor; Vladimir Mozheiko, Head Doctor of the Public Health Institution “Ostrovets Central District Clinical Hospital”, Candidate of Medical Sciences, as well as employees of the Institute of Genetics and Cytology of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, Institute of Modern Knowledge named after M. Shirokov, Belarusian State Pedagogical University named after Maksim Tank.
Professor Irina Moroz presented the results of the research conducted by the professors of Belarusian State Medical University, what aroused great interest. Irina Moroz stressed that elderly people in our country retain high living standard, which is formed primarily by indicators of self-perception, micro-social support and social well-being. The report presented the results of the study on olfaction and gustation and their correlation with quality of life in persons aged 60 years and over (especially those who are long-lived). The results of the study showed the necessity of developing a set of measures related to medical care, physical activity, nutrition, education based on the combined efforts of specialists from different fields (doctors, teachers, psychologists) that would ensure the formation and maintenance of active longevity and contribute to improving the quality of life of the population. The report also highlighted the forms of project results implementation, including the educational process at the Faculty of Career Guidance and pre-University Training of BSMU.
Vladimir Mozheiko, Head Doctor of “Ostrovets Central District Clinical Hospital”, Candidate of Medical Sciences, participated in the project together with the staff of Belarusian State Medical University, noted in his report the huge role of the healthcare system in formation of the longevity phenomenon. At the same time, he drew attention to the need for further interaction between BSMU and Ostrovets CDCH in terms of clinical, scientific and educational activities.
All parties involved in the project have stated the necessity for further research on longevity in Belarus and the island of Sardinia (Italy) in order to develop and promote measures of active lifestyle for elderly people.
Author: Vadim Sushinsky, Head of the General Medicine Department, Belarusian State Medical University, photos by Dmitry Zelenkovsky
Translation: Tatiana Malkovich