Experts for secure health data exchange
|Berlin – Health researchers are expecting progress from the EU Commission’s initiative for cross-border use of medical data.
|Health researcher Ferdinand Gerlach of the University of Frankfurt am Main highlighted the practical benefits of a European Health Data Space. It is a matter of life and health if physicians throughout Europe have access to medical data, including that of foreign patients, he said.
The effective transfer of this information is important, for example, in the case of identified drug risks. Patients with rare diseases in particular benefit from the European Health Data Area, Gerlach added. This is because there are often not enough cases for research. The benefits of an EHDS are large and concrete, he said.
Christof von Kalle of the Berlin Institute for Health Research at the Charité said it is about data spaces over which patients have power of disposal, but which must also be complete. In addition, the software products used must be designed to be interoperable. Manufacturers should be obliged to offer such transition points at no additional cost.
Cryptography expert Dominique Schröder of the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg asserted that the processing of large amounts of data does not conflict with privacy and data protection. In the EU project, IT security should be involved from the beginning.
Data protection law expert Fruzsina Molnar-Gabor of the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences also advocated the broad availability of health-related data. However, high data protection requirements would also have to be met. The EU is currently a long way from digital networking and interoperability, the data systems are too different and not linked nationally, she said.
Marcel Weigand of the Independent Patient Counseling Service (UPD) spoke of a significant initiative in favor of patient care, according to the Bundestag. Already today, cross-border health services are available in several EU countries. Germany, on the other hand, is lagging behind and needs to catch up. Larger data volumes would also bring advantages in healthcare research. What is needed, however, are security, reliability and transparency.
|aerzteblatt.de 01.03.2023 (german original)
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