SAFE is proud to be part of the Angels Initiative project, providing critical information to stroke patients when they most need it, already in the stroke unit. The realisation of this project started simultaneously this May in 12 European countries: Spain, Serbia, Poland, Czech Republic, Latvia, Croatia, Macedonia, Greece, Ukraine, Georgia, Hungary and Turkey.

In selected hospitals in these countries, stroke patients and their carers will be provided with information on stroke and important next steps on their path to recovery. The patient-focused materials are made of five brochures, including a list of national, regional and local stroke support organisations, with their contact details, in order that patients and carers can access further support in the months and years following their stroke. The information provided in the brochures are kindly provided by the Stroke Association UK* and then translated to all project languages, applying the information standard procedure for the translation.

Until now, the Angels Initiative was focused primarily on medical professionals and hospitals, improving processes and facilitating the organisation of acute stroke care.

Illustration: SAFE Angels brochures in Macedonian language

-The Initiative’s aim is to improve stroke outcomes, save lives and reduce long-term disability so often caused by stroke. We believe this can be achieved more effectively if patients and their carers are given critical information when they most need it – as soon after they arrive in the stroke unit as possible.

This will enable them to be actively involved in their treatment, leading to better outcomes and informed communication between healthcare professionals and patients, commented Thomas Fischer, Global Head of the Angels Initiative project.

About the joint SAFE Angels Initiative project

The mission of Boehringer Ingelheim’s (BI’s) Angels Initiative is to increase the number of patients who can be treated in stroke-ready hospitals and to optimise the quality of treatment in all existing stroke centres. The Stroke Alliance for Europe (SAFE), with members from 12 countries, has partnered with BI to support this ambitious project and will add an important dimension by bringing the patient perspective. SAFE’s involvement means patient-focused information will be available to patients and their carers as soon as they arrive in all stroke units. In 2017, the Angels Initiative was endorsed by European Stroke Organisation (ESO), the largest European organisation of stroke professionals.

About SAFE

The Stroke Alliance for Europe (SAFE) a non-profit-making organisation formed in 2004. It is the voice of stroke patients in Europe, representing a range of patient groups from 30 European countries. SAFE’s goal is to decrease the number of strokes in Europe by advocating for better prevention, access to adequate treatment, post-stroke care and rehabilitation.
For more information about SAFE, please visit

About ESO

The European Stroke Organisation (ESO) is a pan-European society of stroke researchers and physicians, national and regional stroke societies and lay organisations that was founded in December 2007. The ESO is an NGO comprised of individual and organisational members. The aim of the ESO is to reduce burden of stroke by changing the way that stroke is viewed and treated. This can only be achieved by professional and public education, and by making institutional changes.
ESO serves as the voice of stroke in Europe, harmonising stroke management across the whole of Europe and taking action to reduce the burden of stroke regionally and globally.

About Angels Initiative

Every 30 minutes a stroke patient who could have been saved, dies or is permanently disabled, because they were treated in the wrong hospital.
Angels Initiative is building a global community of stroke centres and stroke-ready hospitals, working every day to improve the quality of treatment for every stroke patient.
The goal is to get 1500 stroke-ready hospitals around the world by May 2019.
For more information about Angels Initiative, please visit

About Boehringer Ingelheim

Innovative medicines for people and animals have for more than 130 years been what the research-driven pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim stands for. Boehringer Ingelheim is one of the pharmaceutical industry’s top 20 companies and to this day remains family-owned. Day by day, some 50,000 employees create value through innovation for the three business areas human pharmaceuticals, animal health and biopharmaceutical contract manufacturing. In 2016, Boehringer Ingelheim achieved net sales of around 15.9 billion euros. With more than three billion euros, R&D expenditure corresponds to 19.6 per cent of net sales.

*The Stroke Association UK: Copyright and disclaimer

The Stroke Association does not take responsibility for any errors that may appear in the translation, or the effects that an error may have. The original information contained in the publication should only be considered accurate until the published review date.
Please be aware that this information is not intended as a substitute for specialist professional advice tailored to your situation. We strive to ensure that the content we provide is accurate and up-to-date, but information can change over time. So far as is permitted by law, the Stroke Association does not accept any liability in relation to the use of the information in this publication, or any third-party information or websites included or referred to.