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Delivering better healthcare: EU to showcase 33 "best practices" based on IT and communications technology

European Commission - IP/03/425   24/03/2003

Other available languages: FR DE

IP/03/425

Brussels, 24 March 2003

Delivering better healthcare: EU to showcase 33 "best practices" based on IT and communications technology

33 healthcare applications representing "the best of Europe" have been selected for exhibition at the EU's 22-23 May Ministerial Conference eHealth 2003: ICT for health. Ministers responsible for health and for telecommunications from 28 countries will attend the conference to discuss how technology can assist in delivering better and more cost-effective healthcare. The exhibition in the conference centre will show Ministers practical examples of best practices already being implemented in Europe. The 33 exhibits were selected by a panel of independent experts from 179 applications received. Local, regional and national health organisations from 13 Member States, from 5 Accession Countries and from Norway are represented in the exhibition. A full list is published on the eEurope Awards Website given below. The conference will culminate with a Ministerial declaration, and the presentation of eEurope Awards to the best of the exhibitors.

"All Europe's healthcare systems are grappling with the twin challenges of raising the quality of healthcare and trying to contain cost. This exhibition and this conference are examples of how, by fostering an exchange of ideas, the EU can help meet these challenges. There is something to learn from every one of these exhibits," said EU Health and Consumer Protection Commissioner David Byrne.

In support of the eEurope 2005 Action Plan for Health, the eHealth 2003 conference focusing on "The contribution of Information and Telecommunication Technologies to Health" will be held in Brussels on May 22-23 in collaboration with the Greek Presidency.

"The strong interest to exhibit at this Ministerial conference is in itself evidence of the high levels of motivation to improve the provision of healthcare by making better use of IT and communications technology. It is pleasing to see the objectives of our eEurope Action Plan being progressively transposed into reality," said Erkki Liikanen, European Commissioner for Enterprise and the Information Society.

This event includes a two-day exhibition of the 33 eHealth applications selected and the first eEurope Awards ceremony covering this specific priority of the eEurope Action Plan 2005.

Bringing together European ministers and senior policy makers both from the telecoms and health sectors, this event aims at disseminating information on best practices in eHealth and promoting the adoption of eHealth applications across Europe. It underlines the strategic importance of full exploitation of new information technologies in the public administration of health, for the benefit of the citizen as consumer of both health care services and health information.

The selection of exhibitors marks a significant step in the organisation of this high-level conference, and is certain to stimulate local interest in the activities of the healthcare organisations selected to take part.

Background information: the eEurope Awards

The eEurope 2005 Action Plan identifies a number of key target areas in which services, applications and content should be stimulated. The provision of modern online public services in areas such as eHealth, eGovernment, and eLearning is a key element in this strategy. eEurope aims to build upon existing experiences by identifying and exploiting good practices, and promoting them as showcases.

In this context, the eEurope Awards have been launched. Four award competitions will take place between 2003 and 2005.

The competition for the «eEurope Awards in eHealth» was launched with a call for applications to identify current best practices in this field. Having now been selected by independent evaluators, the successful applicants are being offered the opportunity to give a demonstration at the upcoming eHealth conference. The eEurope awards themselves will be presented to the best applications by representatives of the Commission and of the Presidency, in the closing session of the conference.

Further information:

The full list of selected exhibits, and further information on the eEurope Awards may be found at :

http://www.e-europeawards.org/

The eHealth conference website with an initial description of the event :

http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/eeurope/ehealth/conference/index_en.htm


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