The 2020 ANNUAL REPORT and CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY REPORT of the FUNDACIÓ INSTITUT GUTTMANN describes the most relevant events carried out by the organisation throughout the year.
2020 was the first year of the new “Strategic Plan 2020-2025”, a year that was completely influenced by the Covid-19 pandemic, which forced us to dramatically change our day-to-day lives, transforming our daily reality and making us adapt to an unknown, tremendously difficult and very painful situation. Despite the personal and collective suffering the pandemic has inflicted on us, these circumstances have once again proved to us the high degree of commitment of our staff, who have responded with a high level of integrity in terms of both their skills and on a human level. The situation has also enabled us to value the synergy of the collaboration established with our neighbours at the Germans Trias i Pujol University Hospital (HGTiP) with whom we collaborated and shared facilities during the first wave of the pandemic. This has helped us create a shared awareness of the enormous potential and the many benefits that a wider and more ambitious strategic alliance represents for both institutions.
During the first wave, the pandemic practically forced us to empty the hospital of our usual neurological patients to care for people affected by Covid-19. Two hospitalisation units were dedicated to Covid-19 patients who were treated by our professionals with the collaboration and technical supervision of staff from the HGTiP. We also had to transform the sports hall into a field hospital; in the end it did not need to be put into operation, although it remained available until mid-April 2021, with all the inconvenience that this entailed for running our rehabilitation activity, especially for outpatients.
Regarding Guttmann Barcelona, the health emergency situation obliged us to completely close the activity of the Neuroclinic, and we presented a furlough (ERTE) that was accepted. The professional team progressively restarted our usual activity from June 2020.
Despite the extreme difficulties that arose, as far as possible we continued to develop our planned programme for 2020, adapting it to the new situation. We passed most of the clinical, research, teaching and administrative activities to a virtual format (telework and telecare), demonstrating our great capacity for adaptation, and even innovation, in this new area of information and communication technologies. Everyone willingly played their part in this task.
Out of all the actions carried out in the 2020 Programme, we would highlight the following due to their special significance:
- The creation of new tele-health and tele-rehabilitation programmes to attend to the healthcare needs of patients and monitor them from home. The programmes were very well received by patients and professionals, and there is a long journey ahead that will make us rethink some of our models of patient care.
- Development of an adapted version of the cognitive tele-rehabilitation platform Guttmann, NeuroPersonalTrainer, Open GNPT, with the aim of making it available to everybody over 50 years old to promote their brain health and try to minimise the impact of lockdown and the stress and isolation caused by the pandemic.
- Creation of the Neurorehabilitation programme for the treatment of sequelae in post-Covid-19 patients, a programme clearly aimed at responding to the motor, respiratory and cognitive sequelae that many people experienced as a result of having suffered a coronavirus infection.
- The launch of the Covid-19 Platform within SiiDON, created to provide guidelines, exercises, videos and specific recommendations for patients and their families during and after lockdown.
- Celebration of the 55th anniversary of the opening of our hospital in Barcelona in 1965. Based on the special circumstances experienced this year, we were forced to rethink the planned programme of activities, finally opting for a single celebratory social event in hybrid format open to everyone via streaming, which revolved around the presentation of the 3rd book in the Social Innovation and Disability collection and the PARTICIPA social research project. The event took place on 27 November at the Ona Libros bookshop, and was presented by the journalist Mònica Terribas. It featured leading figures from academia, politics and civil society, such as Manuela Carmena, Dolors Bassa, Joan Subirats and Iñaki Gabilondo.
2020 was an extremely complicated and exhausting year for our professionals, but thanks to everybody’s efforts, we have emerged from it quite well. It was also a year in which, under normal conditions, we would have celebrated the 55th anniversary of our institution more intensely, but this was simply not possible due to the restrictions imposed by the pandemic.
Thank you, then, to the entire staff team at the Institut Guttmann, to all our collaborators, to our volunteers, to our suppliers, to our colleagues at Hospital Germans Trias i Pujol, to the patients and their families who have chosen us to provide the specialist care that they need, the members of the Board of Trustees and the Social Council, the public authorities and other funding bodies of the health sector, and in particular we would like to express our gratitude to all the “Friends of the Institut Guttmann”; without the understanding, enthusiasm, help and commitment of everybody mentioned above, we would not have been able to overcome this crisis as we have, nor to achieve the goals we had set for ourselves.