FACT(S). Report on the Digital Health Roadmap 2019 – 2022
The first National Digital Health Roadmap is over : looking back at the FACT(S).
Discover the 5 major pillars to accelerate eHealth from governance, security & interoperability to digital services & innovation.
FACT(S). Report on the digital health roadmap
The views expressed in the 2019 Pon/Coury report on eHealth in France were harsh: poor coordination between workers due to non-interoperable digital services, powerless patients with no control over their own data, a non-computerised medico-social sector, a non-developed innovation, an overlooked European perspective, etc. As is often the case, several parties were to blame for such a delay. We, the public authorities, have started improving the way we do things.
At the end of 2019, we published a first progress report of the roadmap, which showed that, thanks to extraordinary joint efforts, all deadlines for the year had been met. We have since performed the same task every six months to reassure the ecosystem about our collective ability to implement this plan, beyond the theoretical ambitions. Numerous collaborative projects have been launched: a Tour de France of the regions, the Digital Health Council, citizen workshops, committees for patients, professionals, institutions, manufacturers, etc.
Whilst many projects are yet to be confirmed, this special report of the 2019-2022 roadmap details all the progress that has been made.
The 5 major pillars of the eHealth shift
Announced by France’s health minister on 25 April 2019, the roadmap sets out the 5 major pillars of the eHealth shift:
- Strengthening governance in Digital Health
- Increasing the security and interoperability of health information systems
- Accelerating the deployment of core digital services
- Deploying digital health platforms at national level
- Supporting innovation, assessing and promoting stakeholder engagement
1. Strengthening governance in Digital Health
All digital transformation projects are overseen by the ministerial eHealth delegation (DNS), which reports directly to the Ministry of Health (FR MoH). It closely supervises the Agence du Numérique en Santé (ANS), whose principal role is the operational implementation of eHealth policy.
To bring all the stakeholders on board, the major pillars of eHealth policy are debated by the eHealth Council. The delegation also seeks advice from an ethics unit to ensure that its actions are consistent with humanist values.
The technical doctrine of the eHealth shift roadmap for My Health 2022, and the accompanying structural map, were first published in January 2020 and are regularly updated.
2. Enhancing the security and interoperability of health IT systems
Improving the digital identification of health sector stakeholders (all professionals using the health IT systems) is an indispensable precondition for the smooth running of health IT systems. To achieve this, digital identification according to a single national norm will be rolled out across the board. The use of virtual means of authentication will render access to remote services secure, in particular the Carte Vitale app and the e-CPS.
Aside from issues of access and security, a study will be conducted on the provisions for ensuring that users can legally access their personal data under common interoperability standards.
To collectively protect themselves against risks, all health sector stakeholders will have access to a system for declaring security incidents. A national health cyber-surveillance service will be created.
3. Accelerating the deployment of core digital services
he roadmap identifies four main services for sharing health data securely:
the Shared Medical Records (DMP) for storing data that it will be useful for patients and professionals to share throughout the course of treatment;
the use of secure health messaging systems to ensure that professionals can share information securely;
the development of e-prescriptions to simplify and render secure the circuit for transmitting prescriptions, from the issuing of the prescription to the dispensing of medicines by the pharmacist;
the rolling out of regional digital services for coordinating treatment as part of the e-treatment programme.
4. Rolling out eHealth platforms nationally
These platforms will be able to play host to the applications proposed by public and private users. The objective is simple: to help users and health and social care professionals navigate their way around reliable and easily accessible digital spaces.
Adopting a global perspective, the public authorities are overseeing the introduction of three platforms to increase flexibility while retaining control over IT transformation, interoperability, security and ethical norms:
Mon espace santé (My health space) will enable every citizen and health sector stakeholder to select, securely access, and fluently navigate digital health services;
professionals will for their part be able to access a platform offering complementary service packages;
by gathering health data together in a single, secure, harmonised system, the public authorities will have the means to analyse that data on a large scale for the benefit of everyone. This is the objective of the Health Data Hub, the platform for health data.
5. Supporting innovation and stimulating stakeholder involvement
Major investment programmes are helping us to achieve national policy objectives, such as the HOP’EN scheme to support hospital IT systems and the ‘Digital Care Homes’ plan designed to involve care homes fully in the digital shift.
Innovation in eHealth services is encouraged through G_NIUS. Its role is to identify, nurture and disseminate new eHealth concepts, technologies, solutions and patterns of use and provide health sector stakeholders with guidance on all existing tools.
Lastly, all stakeholders will be involved in the debate on national eHealth policy and the modalities of its implementation. Thanks to the ‘tour de France of eHealth’, gatherings were held in all the regions between September 2019 and February 2020. At the ‘citizen eHealth workshops’, users can define the needs of their future Mon espace santé (My health space), approve the user-friendly functions, and test the initial trial versions.