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Experiencing the Advantages of pan-European Electronic Patient Records

eHealth week 2010At the World of Health IT Conference & Exhibition, taking place during eHealth week 2010 in Barcelona from 15-18 March 2010; the IHE Interoperability Showcase (extended deadline: December 1st 2009) will demonstrate how IHE-based electronic patient records work in an ambulatory care setting. Creating an interoperable health information architecture enabling access by patients and authorised doctors to the patient data at the point of care is a key focus for Europe. Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) plays a major role in facilitating access to and sharing of patient information, thereby enhancing patient safety and eliminating the cost of modifying the connection between each system to share the data.

Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise is a joint initiative by healthcare professionals and industry to improve the way computer systems in healthcare share information. Systems developed in accordance with IHE communicate with one another better, are easier to implement, and enable care providers to use information more effectively.

The benefits for professionals of an easier access to patient-related information are enormous. Healthcare information on a particular patient can be accessed at any moment and no matter whether it was generated in a primary care center, a hospital or a private physician's practice. IHE enables such an access and has become the technical framework for nationwide electronic patient records (EPR).

"IHE Interoperability Showcases traditionally show how easy it is for commercial products to interoperate when they are supported by IHE. At the World of Health IT Conference & Exhibition at eHealth Week 2010 we want to go a step further and let attendees experience the benefits of a pan-European IHE. Attendees will be able to create and manage their own simulated health records, based on clinical care scenarios across hospital settings in Europe," said Octavio Barbero, IHE Project Manager.

"Pan-European EHR's are also beneficial for the European citizens. When a Swedish or French tourist falls ill while on holiday in Spain, the Spanish doctor can easily consult the electronic health record of that particular patient," Joan Cornet, President of Fundacio' Tic Salut.

The World of Health IT Conference & Exhibition/eHealth Week will be an occasion to learn the progresses of projects in which IHE is involved, for example the Large Scale Pilot epSOS.

"eHealth Week 2010 is the ideal platform to present, share and experience the advantages of pan-European electronic health records," says Gerard Comyn, Head of Unit, ICT for Health, DG Information and Media, the European Commission.

Registration is open for the 2010 World of Health IT Conference & Exhibition. For more information, visit www.worldofhealthit.org.

About World of Health IT Conference & Exhibition
The World of Health IT Conference & Exhibition is the leading forum for the advancement of Health IT in Europe. Addressing the needs of key stakeholders in the European eHealth Community, The World of Health IT Conference & Exhibition offers professional development sessions, vendor exhibitions, best practice exchanges, networking sessions, and debates and discussions on the issues that will shape the future of eHealth. The WoHIT Organising Committee comprises the EC (European Commission), HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society), EUROREC (European Institute for Health Records), COCIR (European Coordination Committee of the Radiological, Electromedical and Healthcare IT Industry), EHTEL (European Health Telematics Association) and EFMI (European Federation for Medical Informatics). Since its inception in 2006, WoHIT has welcomed more than 5,000 attendees and 180 exhibitors from more than 60 countries throughout Europe and Worldwide.

About the High Level eHealth Conference 2010
Co-organised by the forthcoming Spanish Presidency of the European Union and by the European Commission, with the cooperation of the Government of Catalonia and the Foundation TicSalut, the High Level eHealth Conference 2010 is a ministerial event, representing since 2003 an important annual milestone in the field of ICT for healthcare. The conference theme of this 8th edition - "eHealth for Sustainable Healthcare Delivery: global challenges through local actions" - acknowledges the pressing perspective of a rapidly ageing European society, where the progressively extended life expectancy and the consequent increase in the prevalence of chronic diseases are globally posing serious challenges to the sustainability of national health systems. The conference will present how and why eHealth can make the difference in facing such a global challenge. Visit www.ehealthweek2010.org for more information.

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