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Accelerating Europe´s digital transformation: developing e-Health indicators

Report publication by PredictBy and empirica ´Digital decade e-Health indicators development´

The European Commission established the Digital Decade Policy Programme 2030 to guide Europe´s digital transformation in the areas of digital skills, digital infrastructure, digitalisation of business and of public services. One of the specific targets of this program is to ensure that every EU citizen has access to their digital health records, such as the patient summary or lab results.

The challenge

In order to measure the progress of this target, the EC required a monitoring framework and methodology providing insight into the number of citizens that have full access to their electronic health data in each Member State. Together with empirica, we developed a new Digital Decade e-Health composite indicator including a comprehensive monitoring framework and survey.

The approach

  • We performed a scientific literature review to create an overview of data sources and metrics available in the Member States.

  • We developed key EU indicators to measure citizens’ access to medical e-records. When data was not available, we engaged with stakeholders.

  • We developed a reusable study tool to collect data on the key EU indicators in all Member States, Ireland and Norway.

  • We analyzed the results and created an overview of the current situation in each country and in the EU as a whole, with regard to measuring and monitoring progress on the development and adoption of online access to e-medical records in the EU Member States.

The result

The resulting monitoring framework and methodology enables the European Commission to establish common criteria in order to guarantee the same level of accessibility and quality of services for citizens across Europe and to facilitate cross-border healthcare provision. The framework establishes a clear definition of ´citizen´ access to electronic health data as a 4-dimensional concept constituting one e-health composite indicator broken down into 12 sub-indicators. The 4 dimensions are:

  1. Implementation of electronic access services for citizens

  2. Categories of accessible health data

  3. Access technology and coverage

  4. Access opportunities for certain categories of people

Currently, citizens’ access to electronic health records is on average 72% across EU countries (including Norway and Iceland). A complete overview by country and dimension can be found in the graph below.

Reference of the figure:

European Commission, Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology, Deimel, L., Hentges, M., Latronico, V. (2023). Digital decade e-Health indicators development : final report, Publications Office of the European Union.

For access to the full report, click here.



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