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Action 77: Foster EU-wide standards, interoperability testing and certification of eHealth

Foster EU-wide standards, interoperability testing and certification of eHealth systems by 2015 through stakeholder dialogue.

What is the problem? Lack of EU-Wide standard creates or increases market Fragmentation.

The eHealth market in the EU is highly fragmented, reflecting the different national, regional and local interoperability frameworks that are defined by competent authorities. As a result, the ICT (Information and Communication Technology) solutions provided are tailored only for one specific location and thus risk being expensive, non-reliable and non-interoperable elsewhere.

Why is EU action required? EU-wide standards and eHealth profiles are essential to reduce market fragmentation

EU action will ensure the creation of standards ensuring the interoperability of data. It will also select the right set of standards (known as "profiles") among existing standards to address specific use cases and, in parallel, to develop usage guidelines as well as conformance (or certification) testing schemes.

DAE action 77 will also contribute to the delivery of the European Innovation Partnership in the field of active and healthy ageing, proposed under the Innovation Union flagship.

What will the Commission do?

By the end of 2010:

  • Sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the US on eHealth Interoperability.
  • Ensure impact of interoperability and standards-related Support Actions (under FP7) and leverage results from epSOS, the large scale pilot on interoperable patient summaries and electronic prescription (

In 2011:

  • Launch and guide the Network of Excellence in the area of Semantic Interoperability
  • Propose to the eHealth Governance Initiative to prioritize use cases and develop eHealth profiles.
  • Seek to launch a sustainable initiative involving relevant stakeholders (Standards Development Organizations, eHealth fora & consortia, terminology and ontology development organisations...) to develop eHealth profiles in order to address use cases prioritized by the eHealth Governance initiative.

In 2012:

  • Demonstrate eHealth interoperability testing and certification on a large scale
  • Develop a European eHealth Interoperability Framework
  • Follow up on the implementation of EU-US Memorandum of Understanding on eHealth Interoperability