Official eHealth Week ’16 Press release:
THE HAGUE, THE NETHERLANDS – (HealthTech Wire / News) – The Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, the European Commission and HIMSS Europe officially announced the themes of eHealth Week 2016 in Amsterdam earlier on today. Empowering People, Trust & Standards and Social Innovation & Transition will be the three main topics which will be addressed during the three day conference in June. The patients will have a prominent role during the event, reflecting the focus which is being placed on people and citizens who are using eHealth in the Netherlands and across Europe.
eHealth Week is an official part of the Presidency of the Netherlands in the Council of the European Union, which will take place from 1 January until 30 June 2016. During eHealth Week 2016, over 2,000 international experts in IT and healthcare, public institutions, professional and patient organisations are expected to attend.
The Dutch Minister for Health, Welfare and Sport, Edith Schippers, highlighted the importance of eHealth Week taking place in the Netherlands: “The Netherlands is a pioneer in the area of innovative products and services in the healthcare sector. Whether it concerns diabetes, e-mental health, healthy ageing or equipment for diagnostics, Dutch companies are a global actor and are highly regarded. They can mean a great deal for the healthcare sector and the patient.”
Martin van Rijn, Dutch State Secretary for Health, Welfare and Sport added: “Technological developments succeed each other rapidly. It is our job to make sure that new technologies will lead to better healthcare where people who need support and healthcare are key.”
This theme will address self-empowering eHealth for patients and healthy citizens in order to enable them to be more active in managing their own health. It will also explore how elderly people can continue to live independently and how eHealth applications can better meet the needs of users.
Trusts and Standards
Proper legal frameworks are a precondition for healthcare providers, enterprises and member states to be able to exchange data. Legal clarity is also necessary to ensure trust among the public in eHealth solutions and applications. Proper standards and technical solutions are needed to make systems interoperable and connect the different actors. The objective of the theme is to exchange knowledge on how to promote and enhance trust in health IT systems and how to increase the use of standards in eHealth.
Social Innovation and Transition
Often, much emphasis is placed on the technical aspects of eHealth. However, scaling up eHealth also requires a different mindset on co-operation, organisational and cultural innovation – organising healthcare in a smarter, more efficient and effective way. In this theme, the social aspects of implementation and innovation are key. This theme will stimulate implementation, scale and use of eHealth and discuss where, why and how implementation and upscaling has been successfully achieved and how best practices can be replicated.
Christina Roosen, VP Public Affairs for HIMSS Europe, also revealed the significance of the confirmed themes: “Patients, doctors, nurses and healthy people actively following their health status will change the way that healthcare is delivered, not institutions. eHealth Week will focus on the people that are changing the health care system, and this starts with the power of patients”.