The statement also called on European national and regional health authorities, payers and procurers, and adjacent industries, to do the same.
The largest medical technology industry trade association in Europe also asked for more public investment in digital health infrastructures including electronic health record systems and requested the EU to tie cohesion and other funds for digital health to adherence to these standards.
Serge Bernasconi, CEO of MedTech Europe said: “With this initiative we contribute to a more widespread and accelerated digital health deployment in Europe. Patients will benefit from better interoperability of medical technologies through better quality of care and improved outcomes.”
The call for action specifically references specifications and profiles released by DICOM (Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine), HL7 (Health Level 7), and IHE (Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise). It invites adjacent industries to embrace an interoperable data ecosystem and open, international standards, and make data (sometimes called “real world data” or RWD) available to the healthcare sector.
Commissioner Mariya Gabriel said: “The interoperability of Electronic Health Records in the EU will make it easier for citizens to access their health data securely across borders, and medical professionals will be able to assist citizens more efficiently and effectively. The development of these systems will require support from all stakeholders.”
The paper titled “MedTech Europe’s call to action for an interoperable data ecosystem for digital health” was released at the second Health Tech Roundtable hosted by Commissioner Gabriel in Brussels, convening industry and consumer associations as well as many health technology companies for an informal discussion on ways to advance the digital transformation of health and care.
The paper can be downloaded from the MedTech Europe website.