With the help of an expert panel, Good eHealth has selected a range of eHealth solutions (See also research process). The cases offer you the optimum learning experience for how to go about doing eHealth. In our experience most can be learned from proven real-life good practice examples. These cases need not necessarily be the “best” or the most innovative.
Using our qualitative approach the entire field of eHealth solutions can be assessed. The selected solutions illustrate the entire range of the continuum of healthcare and all the European countries. Cases portray the national, community and business levels of health provision. The process pays particular attention to identifying organisational, socio-economic, and stakeholder issues in eHealth.
We use the term case assessment synonymously to evaluation in this project, meaning summative analytical description and presentation of results and lessons learned derived from written as well as interview sources, if possible compared to the situation without the eHealth solution implemented.
In this project we have adopted a broad definition of eHealth. If the domain of eHealth is defined too narrowly, benefits arising from key characteristics of ICT - low cost re-use of information, including low cost transfer between locations and organisations - can be missed.
As the healthcare sector has many contiguous areas like administration, provision of supplies, public health, social care, continued medical education, and research,the full potential of many ICT applications used in the healthcare domain can only be exploited if they cross the borders of the healthcare sector as conventionally defined.
The following graph illustrates the wide variety of processes and activities where ICT based solutions may be beneficially applied, and it also identifies the organisations and stakeholders which may become involved.
eHealth solutions can be implemented at various levels of an organisation. The institutions can be small, like a single general practitioner’s office. Or they can be very big, like a National Health Service healthcare trust. Good eHealth differentiates between single-site and multiple-site institutions. Good eHealth solutions can be implemented on levels that are smaller than an institution. These can be a department, a hospital ward, or a team – whether in a clinic, a hospital, or a research institute. Regionally, networks can be built between general practitioners and specialist clinicians perhaps to provide more effective cancer treatment. At a Member State level, solutions can aim at communicating with users located throughout the whole country. An example can be a public health portal.
Furthermore, there exist cross-border applications which affect more than one country. These are particularly interesting because these services often have to tackle different legal and cultural issues.
The knowledge base covers the 25 EU Member States, 3 EU Accession Countries, and 3 European Economic Area (EEA) nations as well as Switzerland.
With regard to health and legal systems, economic situation, and number of inhabitants, to give only a few examples, the situation in European countries is quite disparate. This situation is reflected in the database. Good eHealth therefore offers you a short introduction to the most important distinctive characteristics of each European country.