How it works
eHealth refers to tools and services using information and communication technologies (ICTs) that can improve prevention, diagnosis, treatment, monitoring and management. So far the Digital Service Infrastructure for eHealth is planned to support several services:
When a citizen makes an unplanned cross-border healthcare visit to a health provider in the EU, the health professional will have access to the person's Patient Summary (eHealth Network guidelines).
ePrescriptions and eDispensation
The ePrescriptions and eDispensations (eHealth Network guidelines) support the concept that a patient being abroad can receive the equivalent medication treatment that he would receive in his home country.
- ePrescribing consist in an electronic prescription of medicine by a health professional and its electronic transmission to a pharmacy where the medicine can then be dispensed.
- eDispensing, instead, is defined as the electronic retrieval of a prescription and the dispensing of the medicine to the patient as indicated in the corresponding ePrescription.
European Reference Networks (ERNs)
They are virtual networks involving healthcare providers across Europe. They aim to tackle complex or rare diseases and conditions that require highly specialised treatment and concentrated knowledge and resources. To review a patient’s diagnosis and treatment, ERN coordinators convene ‘virtual’ advisory boards of medical specialists across different disciplines, using a dedicated IT platform and telemedicine tools. For more information please check ERN dedicated website.
The process and criteria for establishing an ERN and for selecting its members are set in EU legislation. The first ERNs were launched in March 2017, involving more than 900 highly-specialised healthcare units from over 300 hospitals in 26 Member States.
In the future, Interoperable Patient registries might be deployed.
The Digital Service Infrastructure for eHealth will be composed by core services at EU level which facilitate the generic services operated by the Member States to exchange of patient data and information on prescriptions with each other. It is foreseen that the Digital Service Infrastructure for eHealth will be fully operational by 2020.
What's in it for me?