After the presentations and contributions shared during the June 2022 ECO Community 365 Roundtable Meeting on the European Health Data Space and Cancer, we published an action report "The European Health Data Space and Cancer: Applying Lessons Learnt for Successful Implementation".
The roundtable aimed to:
In November 2021, the Digital Health Network published a position paper, providing advice to the EU, the World Health Organization (WHO) and national governments on how to harness the power of data and digital for better quality cancer care. The paper conveys consensus from healthcare professionals, patients, and the treatment and service development sector, and other invited experts.
"Unlocking the potential of digitalisation in cancer care – No Stopping Us Now!" sets out evidence and suggestions across multiple areas of technological development, including: big data, artificial intelligence, telemedicine, robotics, and virtual reality.
Key recommendations include:
Benefitting from the views and contributions of more than 18 organisations, the paper sets out a positive vision of the opportunities to be realised from all major fields of present innovation in digital healthcare, and provides a mandate from the European cancer community to secure further action from political decision-makers.
With regards to the busy European policy agenda pertaining to data and digitalisation, the Digital Health Network took part in conversations between relevant European institutions to better inform the development of upcoming policy initiatives.
In responding to the European Commission consultation on the European Health Data Space, the Digital Health Network expressed its strong support for the concept, envisaging the initiative to achieve many benefits for healthcare, research and policy. However we also emphasised the need to:
Read our full response here.
In responding to the Artificial Intelligence Regulation Consultation, the Digital Health Network’s response expressed the potential of Artificial Intelligence in improving cancer diagnostic and treatment while emphasising the need for:
In responding to the Data Act Consultation, the Digital Health Network stressed the importance of ensuring a better portability of health data, under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), through specific provisions, including:
In addition, In May 2021, Professor Regina Beets-Tan, Past Co-Chair of the Digital Health Network, was invited to present recommendations to the European Parliament’s Special Committee on Beating Cancer (BECA). Key points emphasised included:
The advance of digital technology continues to revolutionise all our lives on a seemingly ever-increasing basis. The provision of cancer care is no different in this respect.
Opportunities abound to improve practice in all areas of cancer care through better deployment of technology. This includes taking up tools already available, as well as harnessing rapidly emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning. However, doing so in an effective and cost-efficient manner is no easy feat. Careful consideration is required with respect to such issues as implementation pitfalls, best practices, and the overall vision of future practice that is being sought.
With this in mind, our Network on Digital Health aims to assist the European cancer community and policy-makers in navigating the challenges of digital cancer care and maximising its possibilities.
Our Network Co-Chairs convened the first virtual meeting of Network Participants in May 2020, followed by meeting with our Patient Advisory Committee and Community 365 in September 2020. Initial priorities identified by the Network include: