Digital technologies such as 4G/5G mobile communication, artificial intelligence or supercomputing offer new opportunities to transform the way we receive and provide health care services. They enable new approaches to independent living or integrated health and social care.
Health data and advanced data analytics can help accelerate scientific research, personalised medicine, early diagnosis of diseases and more effective treatments.
A Digital Single Market for health and care innovation
In February 2017, the European Commission set up an internal task force bringing together technology and health policy makers to examine EU policy actions to ensure that transformation of health care in the Digital Single Market will benefit people, health care systems and the economy.
As part of the Commission's Digital Single Market (DSM) strategy, three priorities for EU actions were identified in the DSM mid-term review:
- Enable citizen's secure access to and use of health data across-borders;
- Support a cross-border data infrastructure to advance research and personalised medicine;
- Facilitate feedback and interaction between patients and health care providers, supporting citizen empowerment.
A public consultation on the Transformation of Health and Care in the Digital Single Market opened between July and October 2017. It gathered input on the scope of policy actions to be pursued in order to improve people’s health and care. This consultation received nearly 1500 replies of which 90% of respondents agree that citizens should be able to manage their own data. 80% of the respondents agree that sharing health data can be beneficial and around 60% of respondents say that they do not have access to digital health services. A more detailed summary of the results of the consultation will be available in November 2017.