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Debrecen-Nagyvárad Innovation Axis

Professionals and experts from the universities in Debrecen and Oradea, Romania have held a workshop in Debrecen to survey the potential areas of future cooperation. 
 
There are four major areas, comprising cardiology, oncology, pharmacology, as well as food development and nutrition science, in which the two universities intend to find further possibilities of cooperation. In fact, the representatives of these institutions plan to sign a bilateral agreement in September in the framework of what is called Cross-Border Co-Operation Program. 
 Debrecen-Nagyvárad Innovation Axis
“The University of Debrecen and Partium Christian University have worked together in several joint programs before, especially in medical and health sciences, including patient care, but there has been no precedent of university-level cooperation at such a high level as the present one. The parties who have found each other in this workshop would wish to continue to work together in the future on the basis of mutual trust and respect,” said Rector Zoltán Szilvássy at the opening session of the workshop. 
 
He added that the present relationship would definitely move beyond the level of cooperation between the two universities, since it is essential to involve the industrial partners of the universities as well as the municipal governments of the two cities in it, while the long-term objective is to establish an effective innovation axis in the Carpathian Basis between Debrecen and Nagyvárad. A specific example mentioned by the rector was that, since there are high-quality plants processing raw material for the pharmaceutical industry in Romania, and there are equally high-quality plants in Hungary using this raw material to produce pharmaceutical  finished products for wholesalers and retailers, on the basis of these factors, it could be expedient to establish multinational joint ventures. Zoltán Szilvássy identified the chief objective of the cooperation as the initiative to call for joint projects which would be able to operate in their respective market places even after 2020 without the resources provided currently by the European Union.
 
The Dean of Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy, University of Oradea, Adrian Maghiar saidthe following: “Our most important partner is the University of Debrecen. The two institutions have cooperated in several important projects so far, and we would like to continue to rely on the assistance coming from Debrecen in four highlighted fields, as we still badly need cardiological and oncological prevention as well as development in patient care, especially in treating heart attacks and  colon cancer.”
 
“Clinic of Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery of the University of Debrecen is the largest clinic in Hungary, where 40 thousand out-patients and 10 thousand in-patients are treated every year, while the annual number of diagnostic cardiac catheters implanted here is between 4 and 5 thousand, in addition to which more than a thousand open heart surgery procedures are performed. We usually have about a thousand patients with OHCA (out-of-hospital cardiac arrest) to treat every year, fifty percent of which arriving in the middle of the night. In addition to the above procedures, there is also a significant amount of catheter ablations and electro-physiological interventions performed at our clinic,” said István Édes, Head of Clinical Center of the University of Debrecen and Director of Clinic of Cardiology. Professor Édes also referred back to a former joint project, which comprised an application for Viva Anima, a part of which was used to launch a series of new treatments at the university in Oradea.
 
István Édes mentioned the so-called TAVI (Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation) procedure, too, which had been used since 2013 to treat sixty patients in Debrecen, and for which his clinic had received financing not so long ago to cover 25 operations a year.
 
“The University of Debrecen has been in cooperation with the Faculty of Environmental Management of Universitatea din Oradea for the past twenty years, and three of our professors have already become honorary doctors at the institution across the border. We plan to implement joint projects of cooperation with them in the fields of environmental protection monitoring, food development, proteomics (the large-scale study of proteins), and functional food science. Within the latter, we wish to produce fruit, vegetable, and herbal extracts, out of which we can create prototypes after a testing phase on animals,” said István Komlósi, Dean of Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences and Environmental Management. 
 
Csaba Papp, the strategic director of the University of Debrecen responsible for Hungarian-Romanian relations and the chief organizer of the workshop summed up the facts and figures of the cooperation as follows. In the time period between 2007 and 2013, the two countries that share a common border of 450 kilometers had cooperated in as many as 450 projects, using a total amount of EUR 214 million of support from the European Union.  Nagyvárad received EUR 31 million, while Debrecen was provided with EUR 20 million through the cross-border programs. The University of Debrecen implemented 48 projects, while the corresponding figure for Universitatea din Oradea was as many as 38 projects. In the time period that will end in 2020, 4 counties on each side of the common border are going to receive a support amount of EUR 232 million in the framework of “Interreg V-A Romania Hungary Program. This amount will be available for use in six highlighted areas, out of which the most significant ones from the perspective of universities are the funding resources supplied for healthcare and economic development.  
 
At the workshop, the representatives of on the University of Debrecen gave a tour to the visitors of the Faculties of Medicine and Dentistry as well as the institute of Oncology, while the Hungarian participants could have an insight into the operation of County Hospital of Oradea and Universitatea din Oradea
 
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