Only 1 in 25 EU hospitals grants online access for patients to their medical data. According to a study carried out in 906 EU hospitals[1], telemedicine is yet to achieve its full potential:

-          90% have broadband internet access, but only 8% telemonitor patients at home;

-          39% use videoconference for consultations with external specialist, but only 5% have some form of electronic exchange of clinical information with healthcare providers in other EU countries;

-          30% use e-prescription for medicines;

-          8% offer patients online booking of hospital appointment;

-          4% grant patients online access to their electronic patient record.


Deploying ICTs in healthcare remains an exclusive national competence, while the new Directive 2011/24 on CB healthcare offers relatively little scope for action to EU authorities. EU action is confined to support and facilitate exchange of information between Member States within a voluntary network.


Last 10th May, the Commission established in Budapest a Task Force to make proposals for safer, improved and more efficient healthcare services in the EU (on diagnostics, prevention and treatment). A main question is the interoperability for all healthcare and associated technology throughout the EU.



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