The Institute of Preventive Medicine, Environmental and Occupational Health, Prolepsis, was founded by Professor Athena Linos in 1990.
Examples of initiatives and activities of the first years of the Institute’s operation include:
- Applied programmes for the prevention of breast and cervical cancer in Ormylia, Halkidiki that were initiated in 1991 and constitute model European programs of quality assurance in mammography and cervical cancer screening. The programs are still active covering over 15.000 women in the region.
- An educational seminar on epidemiology and research methodology organized in collaboration with the American College of Epidemiology (1991) and a conference on the role of the Mass Media in cancer prevention funded by the European Union (1995). Educational seminars for the sensitization of general practitioners concerning cancer prevention and educational programs for physicians working in rural areas with regards to occupational risks among farmers and fishermen (1994). The programs led to a relevant publication the following year.
- Several primary prevention programs on the prevention of substance abuse (tobacco, drugs and alcohol, 1994 and 1995), which targeted both the general public as well as specific population groups (industry workers, students), and AIDS and skin cancer (1994 and 1993, 1996) covering several Greek islands and other tourist places across Greece.
- Quality assurance programs for health and safety at work in the field of occupational health, and epidemiological studies in the field of industry (i.e. Aluminium de Grece, 1995-1997, Larko, 1990, 1991).
- A study regarding occupational risk factors of pregnant and breast-feeding women (1995) that led to the adoption of a relevant directive in the European Union.
- A study concerning health professions entitled "Vocational Qualifications, Titles and Transparency in Health Services in European Member States" (1995-1998), that summarized and discussed the data on occupational titles in the Health Services field in the EU.
- Data management and statistical analysis of data from clinical trials and descriptive epidemiological research studies.
Since 2003, Prolepsis has been registered with the Hellenic Federation of Voluntary, Non-Governmental Organizations and is active in the field of humanitarian actions. In this framework, it contributes in the work of the Humanitarian Organization "Arc" (in Greek "Kivotos") organizing medical and pharmaceutical coverage for deprived children by volunteers.
Over the years, Prolepsis has assumed a leading role in the field of Public Health, by:
- Offering specialized services in the fields of medical research, data management, organization of integrated health education and health awareness campaigns.
- Providing consultancy services for the prevention, the proper handling of workplace risks as well as for the evaluation of environmental risks.
- Advancing research methodology in the field of health and preventive medicine.
- Supporting education in public health and medical research issues.
- Encouraging interdisciplinary and international co-operation and creating networks of collaboration.