UNICA4EU F2F Meeting in Brussels

The UNICA4EU consortium convened in Brussels on November 15, 2023, for a face-to-face (F2F) meeting that marked a pivotal moment in the journey of leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) for Childhood Cancer care in the European Union. This gathering was a blend of reflection on past achievements and strategizing for future endeavors.

The meeting kicked off with a comprehensive overview of the project's current status. Attendees reviewed the substantial body of work that has been completed, including all submitted documents, publications, and milestones achieved thus far. This session not only celebrated the progress made but also set the stage for planning the completion of remaining tasks.

With the project now in its final stretch, discussions turned to organizing a grand closing event. This event aims to bring together key stakeholders in the fields of childhood cancer and AI in healthcare. The goal is to acknowledge and celebrate the significant path laid by UNICA4EU in these crucial areas, fostering a collaborative environment for future advancements.

A major focus of the consortium has been the dissemination of findings and research facilitated by the UNICA4EU project. Numerous white papers, encapsulating the learnings and insights gathered, were presented and discussed. This sharing of knowledge is pivotal to the project’s mission of improving care pathways for childhood cancer using AI.

Understanding the impact of UNICA4EU’s mission and results is crucial. To this end, a plan involving interviews with relevant stakeholders was unveiled. These interviews are designed to gauge the influence of the project on the landscape of AI applications in childhood cancer care within the EU. As a EU-funded initiative, UNICA4EU is committed to mapping and enhancing the application of AI in this critical healthcare domain.

A significant development introduced at the meeting was the new Knowledge Base platform. This platform is envisaged as a comprehensive repository for all the knowledge and resources gathered by UNICA4EU. It represents a foundational step in establishing a robust framework for the application of AI in the fight against childhood cancer, ensuring that insights and resources are accessible for ongoing and future initiatives.

The UNICA4EU F2F meeting in Brussels was more than a mere congregation; it was a testament to the dedicated efforts in harnessing AI for a noble cause. As the project moves forward, the focus remains on enhancing AI-driven solutions in childhood cancer care, ensuring a brighter, healthier future for children across the EU.

UNICA4EU's F2F Workshop - A significant step forward

The latest face-to-face consortium meeting of UNICA4EU was held in Brussels on the 17th of July, bringing together the thought leaders, domain experts, and stakeholder representatives that make up our esteemed consortium to discuss key developments in the project. The high-intensity dialogue reflected the shared passion and commitment of the partners to drive transformational change in the healthcare landscape.

A critical part of the day’s discussion was steered by coordinator SIOPE, leading the deliberation on potential publications and the long-term sustainability of the project. As we delve deeper into our mission, we remain committed to not just implementing ground-breaking research but also ensuring its sustainability and impact. The consortium explored the potential avenues for publication, thereby amplifying the project's reach and scope.

In a particularly anticipated segment of the meeting, UPM gave a live demonstration of UNICA4EU's knowledge base, showcasing how our information repository has grown and developed. It was exciting to witness the extensive knowledge base, which stands as a testament to the collective learning and shared experience of the consortium. The demonstration proved inspiring and productive, sparking a variety of constructive conversations on the project's advancement.

The next steps for stakeholder consultation were also discussed with much enthusiasm and optimism. Our colleagues at CCI Europe will spearhead focus groups with patients, creating an open forum for feedback and suggestions. We believe that the end-users' perspective is invaluable in shaping an empathetic and effective solution. In parallel, IFIC will be conducting fieldwork interviews to gather nuanced insights from those on the frontline of healthcare. Simultaneously, CCRI will drive community building with related initiatives and projects, fostering a strong network of shared goals and mutual support.

In addition to these steps, there are more exiting news on the horizon, such as the upcoming launch of a survey for healthcare professionals. This will be an invaluable opportunity for professionals within the industry to share their insights and contribute to the project. We eagerly anticipate the valuable insights and perspectives this will bring, further enhancing our work's impact and relevance.

The Brussels meeting marked another significant milestone for the UNICA4EU project, underlining our unwavering commitment to drive change. We look forward to the journey ahead with continued collaboration and innovation, as we work tirelessly to deliver on our vision for a transformed and empowered childhood cancer care.

Stay tuned to our channels to keep up to date!

UNICA4EU shines at ICIC23

We are delighted to share that the UNICA4EU project made a significant impact at the 23rd International Conference on Integrated Care (ICIC23), held in Antwerp, Flanders from May 22nd to 24th, 2023. Presented by our esteemed consortium partner, the International Foundation for Integrated Care (IFIC), this conference brought together leaders, researchers, clinicians, managers, citizens, patients, and caregivers from around the world dedicated to advancing integrated health and social care.

Under the theme of "Care in action: how to work together, a participatory approach," ICIC23 provided a platform for exchanging ideas and sharing best practices in the design and delivery of integrated care. UNICA4EU's innovative approach, leveraging artificial intelligence and digital transformation to improve childhood cancer care, resonated deeply with the conference's mission.

As a hybrid event, ICIC23 offered both in-person and virtual participation, ensuring inclusivity and global engagement. Through IFIC's presentation during the EU Projects Networking dedicated session, UNICA4EU had the opportunity to connect with researchers, healthcare professionals, policymakers, and advocates who share our commitment to enhancing the lives of children with cancer.

Participating in ICIC23 reinforced our dedication to collaborative and participatory approaches, aligning with the conference's core theme. By actively engaging with experts in integrated care, we gained valuable insights that will drive our ongoing efforts to develop holistic, patient-centered solutions.

The UNICA4EU project continues to strive towards revolutionizing childhood cancer care through the integration of AI and digital innovation. Together with our consortium partners, we remain committed to advancing integrated care for the benefit of children with cancer worldwide.

UNICA4EU at SIOPE's Annual Meeting 2023

Last week, the UNICA4EU project was proudly presented at the esteemed 4th SIOP Europe Annual Meeting, held in Valencia from 8th to 12th May 2023. This significant event brought together a wide range of stakeholders committed to addressing crucial issues faced by children and adolescents with cancer.

The SIOP Europe Annual Meeting serves as a unique platform for key stakeholders to engage in interactive discussions, focusing on the current priorities and needs within the field of childhood cancers. By fostering collaboration and knowledge exchange, this meeting plays a pivotal role in advancing research, care, and education for young cancer patients.

In line with SIOPE’s dedication to comprehensive and inclusive initiatives, the Annual Meeting was organized in partnership with CCI Europe. Both SIOPE and CCI Europe are part of the UNICA4EU consortium and their collaboration ensures the active involvement and representation of childhood cancer parents and survivors, amplifying their voices and perspectives in shaping the future of pediatric oncology, both in the medical field and the context of the project.

What sets the SIOP Europe Annual Meeting apart is its innovative session formats, interactive workshops, and forums, empowering working groups to deliberate and disseminate outcomes from high-quality clinical and basic research conducted across Europe. By merging research, care, and education, SIOP Europe and the European community of health professionals are committed to two primary goals for the next decade: increasing cure rates and improving the quality of life for children with cancer.

The meeting program featured a diverse range of sessions, including presentations from 16 European Clinical Trial Groups, each specializing in specific tumor types or diseases. These groups held open and joint sessions, fostering collaboration and the exchange of best practices among European and international cooperative groups. Topics covered during the meeting encompassed recent clinical trial outcomes, advancements in diagnosis and therapy for various pediatric cancers, guideline presentations, debates on artificial intelligence, childhood cancer epidemiology, drug safety, radiation oncology, data protection, and sessions dedicated to communication and patient involvement, co-organized by our esteemed partner CCI Europe.

We are honored to have had the opportunity to showcase the UNICA4EU project at this prominent event, where we shared our vision, objectives, and progress with a diverse audience of experts, researchers, clinicians, and advocates. The engagement and enthusiasm generated during the SIOP Europe Annual Meeting have further solidified our commitment to leveraging AI and innovative technology to improve outcomes and provide hope for children with cancer.


Our F2F Consortium Meeting in Brussels

UNICA4EU recently held an in-person meeting in Brussels in February 2023, which focused on the project's overall aim of leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) to improve outcomes for children with cancer. The meeting built on previous discussions that aimed to answer the challenge of what clinicians and patients need from AI, and how to get there.

The UNICA4EU project is a pilot initiative building on the EU4CHILD project, and by the end of the project, it aims to provide clear, justifiable, and realistic recommendations for all the relevant stakeholders involved in the fight against childhood cancer.

To encourage lively interaction and discussion, the agenda was structured to allow for active participation from all attendees. Lead discussants were allocated to each session based loosely on the work package (WP) and tasks for the project, but there was also room for attendees to express their opinions and lead the discussion if they felt strongly about any specific session.

Each lead discussant was tasked with preparing no more than a 10-minute introduction to promote discussion and facilitate the session. The aim of the meeting was for everyone to define their progress on the relevant activities from their tasks, so the group could see how it all fit together and identify any remaining gaps in knowledge, activities, and engagement.

This was an excellent opportunity for the UNICA4EU consortium to come together and discuss their progress towards their goal of improving outcomes for children with cancer through the use of AI. By fostering active participation and discussion, the meeting allowed the consortium to identify gaps and find ways to work together to fill them.

The future results of the UNICA4EU project have the potential to make a significant impact on the lives of children with cancer and their families. The consortium's commitment to working together and utilizing the latest technologies is a testament to their dedication and passion for this important cause.