The European Commission (EC) has selected empirica Communication & Technology Research along with the industry’s global Continua Health Alliance, the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI), Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) -Europe, and The Centre in Brussels for supporting its Smart Personal Health systems initiative. Out of seven submissions, this was the winning consortium on the EC’s call for proposals to promote interoperability of personal health devices. Support is received from the European Commission’s 7th Framework Programme for R&D.
The first workshop is slated to be held at the High Level eHealth Conference and World of Health IT in March 2010 in Barcelona, Spain. "In order to let Europe reap the full benefit of personal health systems, healthcare stakeholders must understand and support the range of challenges in facilitating the interoperability of personal health systems, across technical to semantic, organisational and legal aspects," said Mario Romao, co-chair of Continua’s European eHealth Policy working group. "This initiative - Smart Personal Health - is an activity co-financed by the European Commission that will deliver a series of key awareness raising activities throughout Europe".
Specifically promoting interoperability in as well as between personal health and other eHealth systems, Smart Personal Health will hold workshops with varying stakeholder foci in Barcelona, Belfast, and Berlin, and conclude with a pan-European interoperability conference during the Continua Winter Summit 2010. A final report on key interoperability challenges for personal health systems and recommendations for respective policy actions will merge results from the many stakeholder dialogues, integrated with research outcomes from empirica’s experts. As Dr. Veli Stroetmann, lead author of the EC’s study SemanticHEALTH Roadmap observed: “This work will be a great opportunity to bring to bear our vast experience in the interoperability field to advance priority European Union policy issues.”
The report's policy recommendations will target the European Commission, European national and regional authorities, stakeholder groups as well as industry.