Research & Innovation - Participant Portal


TOPIC : Digital health and care services – support for strategy and (early) adoption

Topic identifier: SC1-HCC-04-2018
Publication date: 27 October 2017

Types of action: CSA Coordination and support action
Opening date:
07 November 2017
Deadline: 25 April 2018 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Societal Challenges
Work Programme Year: H2020-2018-2020
Topic Updates
  • 08 November 2018 13:03

    Please note that for this topic some of the  links available under point 5 of the topic conditions were outdated.  We invite you to review and check the links which have now been updated and refer to the relevant Work Programme.

Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Health and care service providers and users are increasingly facing complex decisions when exploring and investing in new health and care solutions. There is a need to support cross-border cooperation in preparation of procurement of research and innovative digital solutions, including on how to balance innovation risks with improved outcomes. Further support is also needed for implementing high quality policies, strategies and practises in a concerted manner and providing more confidence in addressing key areas of interventions and related unmet needs, procedures and other measures. In addition there is a need to facilitate an appropriate dialogue with the supply side and academic stakeholders to understand the constraints and possibilities.


Create favourable framework conditions for cross-border Communities of Practise (CoP) and create a network that will assist the health & care research and innovation ecosystems in taking investment decisions on future procurement of research and innovation and, eventually, on (large scale) deployment of eHealth systems and new care delivery models. The network should support existing ecosystems, create capacities, promote, co-ordinate, collaborate with other innovation accelerators and investors, and focus on adoption and scale of health innovation European wide. To facilitate sufficient knowledge brokerage all appropriate actors in the innovation chain and systems should be engaged

The consortium should represent a well-designed network of procurers and demand side actors e.g., European regions, national care authorities, NGOs, patient and consumer organisations that have proven experience in the field and the capacity to engage and consult objectively all relevant actors. The consortium should also connect to investors, National Promotional Banks and Economic Development Agencies.

Additionally, diverging expectations and risk management in innovation chain should be addressed by offering a set of support activities beyond the innovation procurement procedures including access to finance and investor networks.

Approaches addressing consumer health should be interlinked in those cases where the institutional health and care services are expected to contribute.

The consortium is expected to assist those procurers that intend to prepare for a cross-border innovation procurement e.g., guiding them to address well-defined unmet needs of users in health and care, use the repositories of best practises and implementation guidelines and providing opportunities for networking.

The findings in earlier co-ordination and support actions for procurers e.g., EPP eHealth[1], Inspire[2] and EAFIP[3] should be taken on-board. Networking with supply and consumer market actors, investors and business accelerators should be well established (e.g. eHealth hub[4][5] , EIT-KIC[5], EIP-AHA[6], AAL[7], ENoLL[8], National Promotional Banks, Economic Development Agencies). The progress in Blueprint Digital Transformation of health and care[9] and EU-US MoU on health IT innovation eco-systems[10] should be incorporated.

The proposal should include parallel activities building up on the competences and capacities of the network including but not limited to:

1) Co-ordinate the development of a multi-collaborative growth policy & strategy of the European health & care procurers and other demand side actors in the quadruple helix[11] systemic context. The knowledge brokerage should facilitate easy migration of competences benefitting the ecosystems at various maturity levels in the innovation chain in thematic Communities of Practise and other professional networks.

In particular, the following elements should be taken into account:

  • facilitating the development of key areas of interventions in knowledge brokerage settings to get validated and accepted in health & care delivery services integrating data strategy as a fuel of novel digital health services;
  • linking research institutions, university hospitals in the context of thematic CoP;
  • education of new collaborative innovation principles and practises;
  • building upon national initiatives, however, taking into account the Lisbon treaty[12] and

  • developing the existing or building up repositories of methodologies and set-ups of CoPs

2) Tailored assistance for procurers, regions, cities, national authorities and users to foster sustainable adoption e.g., by developing case specific innovation/business models, giving legal aid, addressing regulation, managing risks, sharing best practises, training and education, access to finance, addressing procurement events etc., interlinking with innovation acceleration of digital health and care industries, other actors.

3) The network should undertake activities that investigate the feasibility and facilitate the concrete preparation of a cross-border PCP for at least one shared common user and procurement need.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to €3M over three years would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of a proposal requesting other amounts or duration.

Expected Impact:

The proposal should provide appropriate indicators to measure its progress and specific impact in the following areas:

  • Concerted approach and solutions to the challenges faced by the health ecosystems as perceived by service providers and users in several countries. Increased opportunities for health and care services providers to address unmet needs. Reduced fragmentation of service providers’ demands.
  • Evidences of support and collaboration with consortia developing unmet needs for innovation procurement and implementation aspects beyond the innovation procurement procedures.
  • Concrete preparation of a cross-border PCP for at least one shared common procurement need.
Cross-cutting Priorities:

Open Innovation
Innovation Procurement

[1]European Procurers Platform - eHealth - Transforming the market for eHealth Solutions

[2]International Network Supporting Procurement of Innovation via Resources and Education,

[3]European Assistance for Innovation Procurement (EAFIP)

[4]eHealth Hub: Integrated Support for eHealth SMEs and stakeholders,

[5]European Institute of Innovation & Technology - Health,

[6]European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing,


[8]European Network of Living Labs

[9]Blueprint Digital Transformation of health and care:

[10]EU-US EHEALTH/ HEALTH IT MOU UPDATED ROADMAP Webinar New Roadmap Work-stream "Supporting Transatlantic eHealth/Health IT Innovation Ecosystems', 2016

[11]Open Innovation, Open Science, Open to the World – a vision for Europe, EC, 2016, p.12

[12]Treaty of Lisbon amending the treaty on European Union and the treaty establishing the European Community (2007/C 306/01), see notably Articles 2C(k), 2E(a), 5a, 136a (section on Public Health), 188c(b)

Topic conditions and documents

1. Eligible countries: described in Annex A of the Work Programme.
A number of non-EU/non-Associated Countries that are not automatically eligible for funding have made specific provisions for making funding available for their participants in Horizon 2020 projects. See the information in the Online Manual.

In recognition of the opening of the US National Institutes of Health’s programmes to European researchers, any legal entity established in the United States of America is eligible to receive Union funding to support its participation in projects supported under this topic

2. Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in Annex B and Annex C of the Work Programme. 


Proposal page limits and layout: please refer to Part B of the proposal template in the submission system below.


3. Evaluation:

  • Evaluation criteria, scoring and thresholds are described in Annex H of the Work Programme. 
  • Submission and evaluation processes are described in the Online Manual.

4. Indicative time for evaluation and grant agreements:

Information on the outcome of evaluation (single-stage call): maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.


5. Proposal templates, evaluation forms and model grant agreements (MGA):

Coordination and Support Action:

Specific provisions and funding rates
Standard proposal template
Standard evaluation form
General MGA - Multi-Beneficiary
Annotated Grant Agreement

6. Additional provisions:

Horizon 2020 budget flexibility
Technology readiness levels (TRL) – where a topic description refers to TRL, these definitions apply


Members of consortium are required to conclude a consortium agreement, in principle prior to the signature of the grant agreement.

8. Additional documents:

1. Introduction WP 2018-20
5. Introduction to Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies (LEITs) WP 2018-20
5i. Information and communication technologies (ICT) WP 2018-20
8. Health, demographic change and well-being WP 2018-20
16. Science with and for society WP 2018-20
18. Dissemination, Exploitation and Evaluation WP 2018-20

General annexes to the Work Programme 2018-2020

Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Regulation of Establishment
Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Rules for Participation
Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Specific Programme

7. Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions.

Where relevant, proposals should also provide information on how the participants will manage the research data generated and/or collected during the project, such as details on what types of data the project will generate, whether and how this data will be exploited or made accessible for verification and re-use, and how it will be curated and preserved.

Open access to research data
The Open Research Data Pilot has been extended to cover all Horizon 2020 topics for which the submission is opened on 26 July 2016 or later. Projects funded under this topic will therefore by default provide open access to the research data they generate, except if they decide to opt-out under the conditions described in Annex L of the Work Programme. Projects can opt-out at any stage, that is both before and after the grant signature.

Note that the evaluation phase proposals will not be evaluated more favourably because they plan to open or share their data, and will not be penalised for opting out.

Open research data sharing applies to the data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. Additionally, projects can choose to make other data available open access and need to describe their approach in a Data Management Plan.

Projects need to create a Data Management Plan (DMP), except if they opt-out of making their research data open access. A first version of the DMP must be provided as an early deliverable within six months of the project and should be updated during the project as appropriate. The Commission already provides guidance documents, including a template for DMPs. See the Online Manual.

Eligibility of costs: costs related to data management and data sharing are eligible for reimbursement during the project duration.

The legal requirements for projects participating in this pilot are in the article 29.3 of the Model Grant Agreement.


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