Advancing Digital Health in the Real World

“Digital health has been on stage definitely for years by now but, beside the market development and the policy efforts, it seems not have fully landed in the real world yet”, Jorge Gonzalez, eHealth HUB coordinator states.

Having worked in the field for three years with various stakeholders under the Horizon 2020 umbrella, the eHealth HUB final workshop at HIMSS 2019 in Helsinki gathered twenty among the most influential representatives from the entire spectrum of eHealth stakeholders in Europe to discuss “How to advance health in the real world”.
Under the expert guidance of the project Coordinator (Ticbiomed), invaluable insights were shared at the workshop, involving key players in digital health from corporates, investors, startups, healthcare organisations, regulatory firms and the European Commission itself.
Seven key action points were raised, as briefly reported below.

The complete eHealth HUB position paper “Conclusions from the Stakeholder Meeting: Advancing Digital Health in the ‘’Real-World’’, is available on the eHealth HUB website, under Resources section.

The 7 eHealth HUB Action Points

1) Digital health is a collaborative game.

Technology push do not seem to work as well in Healthcare as in other sectors, while transformative partnerships between the health and technology sectors will open new opportunities.

2) Innovation without adoption is money for nothing.

Pilots must aim to sustainability and scalability, and prior organizational commitment from top management is needed for an effective procurement process to be started.

3) When interacting with corporates, clearly understand the culture and expectations.

In other words, take into account that: getting the right connection is gold; corporates are evidence-based and risk averse by nature; the relevance of time varies among the different stakeholders.

4) There is a need to evolve the traditional business models in healthcare.

Changes in reimbursement would ease the access to digital solutions. Start-ups are slightly helping payers to reduce the burden and to be able to provide the same services at a lower cost.

5) Education on the use potential impact of technology is also needed.

The understanding of the impact of disruptive technologies – on both decision maker and final user’s side – it is a key to create opportunities.

6) In data we trust. Decision makers need data proving that digital health works.

Proper assessment of savings or improved outcomes is necessary and has to be trustworthy.

7) Let’s insist on this: legal and regulatory are a must.

The importance of the legal and regulatory aspects is not properly acknowledged by SMEs as compliance is considered non-affordable and is not well understood due to its complexity. Yet, non-compliance creates a high risk for market entry.

Together with the officials from the European Commission, stakeholders from the following organizations actively contributed to the discussion: Ospedale Pediatrico Bambino Gesù, IT; ROCHE, CH; Odense Hospital, DK; BAYER, DE; Ticbiomed, ES; Leanentries, FI; Dutch MOH, DK; Phillips, SE; Mediktor ES; Barcelona Health Hub, ES; Chino io, DE-IT; Estonian Health Insurance Fund, EE; Digital Health Hub Oulu, FI; Health 2.0, UK/USA; AXA PPP, UK; Vertical, FI; SITRA, FI; HealthInnov, FR; Accenture, NO.

The eHealth HUB team is composed by TicBioMed (coordinator), APRE – Agenzia per la Promozione della Ricerca Europea, Clinic Law Incubator, Edito, Engage, Inno, META Group, Queen Mary University of London, Steinbeis 2i GmbH.

For any further information, please contact:
• Jorge Gonzalez, eHealth HUB Coordinator. Email:
• Chiara Buongiovanni, eHealth HUB Communication. Email:

About eHealth HUB
eHealth HUB is the European eHealth business support is the new EU-funded initiative, cross-border and focused on the digital health vertical. eHealth HUB’s goal is to provide high-quality business-oriented services tailored to the needs of European eHealth startups, SMEs and stakeholders. We use a demand-driven approach to promote new business and collaboration opportunities for SMEs and key ecosystem stakeholders including healthcare provider organizations, investors, insurers, pharma and med-tech.

contact for scientific information:
Jorge Gonzalez, eHealth HUB Coordinator. Email:

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