Digital health is a hot topic at the European level at the moment, and one of the most important initiatives in the field is the discussion on how best to attain a common European Health Data Space (EHDS). In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the value of cooperation in medical research has become even more prominent and, with it, the demand for a supporting e-infrastructure and services.
As such, eHealth is a wide thematic area very relevant to the GÉANT community, and there is a clear need to investigate eHealth and discuss the challenges and potential benefits.
On 27 January 2021, the GÉANT Community organised a first eHealth baselining event, to assess for the first time the needs of this specific community. The event managed to produce a list of first work items which could be taken into account by the Task Force in the definition of its work plan. A particular focus was given to health services made available in a ubiquitous and user-friendly way by relying on e-infrastructures; and telemedicine as the tool to provide patient care remotely.
The GÉANT community have already been supporting eHealth projects or offer eHealth-related services to their customers. EOSC-Life, a multi-million Euro project funded by the European Commission, tackles several aspects of general relevance related to eHealth and e-infrastructures.
Now fully operational and supported by several European NRENs, the eHealth TF aims primarily at enhancing coordination, exchange of best practices and sharing knowledge among the NRENs (and their implied eHealth institutions & projects) in the activities they are individually carrying out to support their eHealth User Communities.
In accomplishing this primary task, aimed at building useful synergies by gathering and exchanging experiences, it will act by mandate from the NRENs and with their consensus the TF will address the needs of eHealth NREN users, spotting the gaps and proposing solutions to overcome them and focusing on the specific benefits and exploitable outcomes for NRENs in their end-user facing support role. The overarching TF objective will be supporting the access to eHealth data by enabling the required network, AAI, Cloud, Security services in the eHealth domain, boosting the potential exploitation of eHealth services by the GÉANT community.
To learn more about the Task Force on eHealth, including its work plan, and check upcoming meetings, visit the dedicated wiki page: https://wiki.geant.org/display/EHE/eHealth+-+Home
This article is featured on CONNECT38! Read or download the full magazine here