JADECAREs 1st Stakeholder Forum, held online on 10 November 2021, identified and compiled potential needs and opportunities of health care systems related to the transfer and implementation of digitally enabled person-centred care.

The annual Stakeholder Forums of JADECARE are intended to facilitate the exchange of experience and the networking between the organisations participating in JADECARE and relevant external stakeholders. These include health system representatives, researchers and academia interested in collaborating with the Joint Action to discuss the current status of the local implementation plans of good practices, emerging problems and further ideas and solutions. In addition, key health care industries/developers are invited to contribute on how to enhance the competitiveness of the European industry to create economic growth opportunities.

The Forum started with a key note of Julia Palma from EIT Health Spain, highlighting “Challenges of implementation of digitally enabled integrated person-centred care”

JADECARE was presented in an overview by Esteban de Manuel Keenoy from Kronikgune Institute for Health Services Research (KG), Spain, the Coordinator of JADECARE, and by the respective work package leaders for each of the original Good Practices: Jon Txarramendieta (KG), Josep Roca (Institut d’Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer, IDIBAPS, Spain), Manfred Zahorka, (Optimedis, Germany) and Morten Sønderskov Frydensberg, (Region of South Denmark, Denmark).

Expertise, knowledge, experience and opinions of the invited panellists and participants to enrich and improve the local implementation plans of JADECARE were discussed in a virtual format using Zoom. On the Forum, manifold views on the following predefined subjects were exchanged regarding:

  1. Digitally enabled integrated person-centred care, JADECARE and its impact:
  • Where do you see the greatest opportunities and what are the greatest challenges for digitally enabled integrated person-centred care in the near future (5 years)?
  • Which of those challenges do you envision to be tackled within JADECARE? Do you have ideas/suggestions for improvement of implementation plans according to your experience/knowledge?

Four experts were presenting their statements and visions for opportunities regarding this topic:

  • Antoni Dedeu from WHO (World Health Organization) Office for Primary Health Care, Europe
  • Donna Henderson from Digital Healthcare Innovation, TEC (Technology Enabled Care), Scotland
  • Marc Lange from EHTEL (European Health Telematics Association)
  • Julia Palma from EIT Health Spain.

The experts stated that technology can be the functional component to integrated care acting as a glue to join together the different layers that need to be ordered and put in alignment to achieve real integrated care. They acknowledged the importance of taking context into account as performed in JADECARE, the importance of implementation and governance leadership and, due to the COVID experience, the enhanced chance of digitally empowering patients and citizens to take much better care of themselves and their own health as well as of digitally addressing the relevant pressure points in care. The importance of avoiding “pilotitis” in aligning with national health strategies in a comprehensive approach in order to support innovative sustainable digital health care solutions involving digital health determinants was emphasised, reaching from organic growth in regional projects over national governance strategies to a joint European endeavour.

  1. Cross-sectoral collaboration:
  • What would be your suggestion how health and social services can better engage industry and academia to seek solutions to allow the transformation of healthcare systems into digitally enabled integrated person-centred care systems?
  • Where do you see the biggest opportunities for start-ups?

Five experts highlighted possible ways of interaction and suggested opportunities for start-ups in this field:

  • Giovanni Gorgoni from AReSS (Apulia Government Agency for Strategic Planning in Health and Social Policies), Italy
  • Albert Alonso from IFIC (Intl. Foundation for Integrated Care), Hospital Clinic Barcelona
  • Antonio Sarriá-Santamera from Nazarbayev University (School of Medicine), Republic of Kazakhstan
  • Ivan Eržen from NIJZ (National Institute of Public Health), Slovenia
  • Bernhard Gibis from the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KBV), Germany

The experts highlighted the concept of “ecosystem strategy” starting digital transformation in the healthcare sector from the patient journey, to be organised for integrated practice from the beginning and involving a continuous dialogue of all players (academia, healthcare system and industry) to provide a health outcomes framework. Start-ups are advised to pursue solutions to enhance and enable current remote contact systems with artificial intelligence (“conversational intelligence”) that are designed for easy use, keeping complexity behind the scenes, taking digital illiteracy of patients into account and keeping frugal innovation in mind. It was emphasised that a national digital healthcare strategy is important also in the context of healthcare industry and health care providers to agree on which direction they should and can develop their solutions. At the same time, the need was urged to listen to the voice of healthcare professionals from the beginning, who have to implement new digital tools, who have to adapt to and to take over the new tools, by having appropriate testing phases.

  1. Use of data:
  • Where do you see the most relevant regulatory issues/conflictive points concerning the use of patient data that should be addressed by the healthcare systems in the near future?

Three experts were exploring the challenges and offering suggestions to this subject:

  • Lars Hulbæk from MedCom, Denmark
  • Dipak Kalra from i~HD (The European Institute for Innovation through Health Data)
  • Hrvoje Belani from the Ministry of Health, Directorate for eHealth, Croatia

The experts reminded the audience of the importance to involve lawyers to update legislation to support all developed digital opportunities of data sharing and exchange in order to meet the legal claims from the GDPR approach and the Medical Device Regulation”. They emphasised the need for a national governance for mandatory user standards for data exchange which at the same time should be balanced between central requirements and local degrees of freedom and innovation. In addition the public communications of existing e-health services to raise awareness needs to be continually planned and implemented, enhancing direct digital interaction pathways between patients with healthcare services or healthcare stakeholders. JADECARE action implementers were advised to be aware of the different levels of data usage and therefore include those levels into the informed consent formats, transparent for all stakeholders, especially patients, in order to be allowed and able to make use of the data for upscaling.