In December, the European Union (EU) program MyHeart will officially end with a report on the advanced telemonitoring devices and solutions for cardiac care developed from the 40-month project at a cost of €9 million ($12.7million).

From its operations in Eindoven, the Netherlands, Philips Healthcare led the consortium of 34 companies and institutions from 11 countries that participated the project funded under the EU's Sixth Framework Program.

This year in two successive announcements Philips was named the lead partner for two follow-on programs to be funded under the EU's new Seventh Framework Program (FP7).

HeartCycle builds on the progress made by the MyHeart project bringing together some of the same actors with the goal of advancing technologies and services aimed at home-based disease management of coronary heart disease, identified as the key area for improving medical standards of care.

A four-year project, HeartCycle will receive €14 million ($19.75 million) in EU funding and involve 16 companies and institutions.

The second program for FP7 to be led by Philips is euHeart, also extending across four years and also receiving €14 million ($19.75 million) in EU funding.

Eighteen partners will participate in euHeart, which aims to improve the diagnosis, therapy planning and treatment of cardiovascular disease, one of the biggest causes of mortality in the western world.

A total of 1.9 million deaths in the EU every year are the result of cardiovascular diseases, causing annual health costs of 105 billion.

Half of those deaths occur in people who have previously had a heart attack, which explains the EU's focus on "finding better ways to manage and treat coronary heart disease and chronic heart failure as one of the most effective ways of reducing the human cost and financial burden of these debilitating conditions."

— John Brosky, European Editor