A new Ludwig Boltzmann Institute (LBI) for Digital Health and Prevention was established in Salzburg under the scientific direction of Prim. Univ. Prof. Dr. Dr. Josef Niebauer, MBA. The institute is located at the University Institute for Sports Medicine at the University Hospital Salzburg and aims to help patients as well as healthy individuals to achieve sustainable lifestyle changes.

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the most common cause of death in Austria and worldwide[1] and induces significant burden on individual, societal, and economic levels.[2] Exercise training and physical activity interventions are core components of cardiac rehabilitation.[3] However, evidence shows that it is currently challenging for CVD patients[4], CVD risk groups, and the general population alike, to sustainably implement heart-healthy levels of exercise and physical activity in the long-term. The objective of this research program is to provide long-term, sustainable, efficient, and effective support to CVD patients for health-promoting behavior change by means of digital technology, to reduce the risk and consequences of CVD.

The program initially focuses on behavior change for heart-healthy exercise and physical activity. The institute’s goal is to support CVD patients in making long-term, sustainable, efficient and effective health-promoting lifestyle changes using new digital technologies.

The consortium partners of the LBI for Digital Health and Prevention are the University Hospital Salzburg, under the lead of the Institute for Sports Medicine, the Salzburg University of Applied Sciences, the Paris-Lodron University Salzburg, the Salzburg Research Forschungsgesellschaft, the Austrian Institute of Technology and the State of Salzburg.

[1] GBD 2016 Causes of Death Collaborators. Lancet, 2017;390:1151–1210. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(17)32152-9
[2] Heidenreich et al. Circulation, 2011;123:933–944. https://doi.org/10.1161/CIR.0b013e31820a55f5
[3] Pelliccia et al. Eur Heart J, 2020;ehaa605. https://doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehaa605
[4] Kotseva et al. Eur J Prev Cardiol, 2019;26:824–835. https://doi.org/10.1177%2F2047487318825350