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EU mHealth hub including evidence for the integration of mHealth in the healthcare systems

The core activities of the ‘innovation hub for mHealth’ should focus on fostering research and innovation in mHealth and bolster policy making efforts in implementing mHealth strategies tailored to the need of the European countries and regions involved.

The hub should act as a convening platform to bring together experts and innovators for institutionalising best practices in mHealth whilst avoiding the creation of silos and fragmentation in mHealth knowledge across the EU.

Emphasis should be put on the development of a multi-stakeholder ecosystem targeted at increasing collaboration between various stakeholders such as researchers, national, regional, local authorities, and mHealth manufacturers, supported by a central resource that tracks innovation and best practices and identifies gaps in policy while fostering cross-border knowledge sharing among Member States or countries associated to Horizon 2020.

The hub should gather evidence on health outcomes, quality of life, care efficiency gains of mHealth solutions to support treatment and prevention of NCD through the creation of a central database, and/or integration of existing databases, that will constitute a repository of all evidence on mHealth effectiveness and benefits, including common criteria and methodology for comparing mHealth solutions, best practices and innovative solutions, business models/reimbursements, governance and oversight of apps with specific solutions targeting identified groups: vulnerable populations and with chronic diseases.

The action may involve financial support to third parties in line with the conditions set out in Part K of the General Annexes. The selection process open to relevant health authorities and innovation institutes in the EU Member States or countries associated to Horizon 2020 should be defined. Transparency and a good geographical balance should be ensured. The hub will help to fully implement mHealth programme or strategy of selected third parties, for which financial support will be granted.

Comparison of solutions and situations in the database between different countries and regions should be made in order to identify specific contextual links as well as to identify opportunities for exchange of knowledge and experience on mHealth best practices and solutions.

In the longer term, the hub should aim to become self-sustaining and therefore develop measures of sustainability, while seeking at covering the whole territory of the European Union.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of EUR 3 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Exchange of best practices and innovation monitoring are essential to support wider deployment of mHealth solutions on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) within Member States or countries associated to Horizon 2020.

Evidence on mHealth effectiveness to help support the management of non-communicable disease still remains fragmented in Europe, as illustrated by the results to the Green Paper consultation on mobile Health.

An EU innovation hub would enable wider collaboration among EU researchers and private stakeholders in mHealth. This could become the “right arm” of EU action in mHealth by streamlining efforts in research and innovation, passing the difficult stage from research to large scale deployment.

  • Creating evidence on health outcomes, quality of life and care efficiency gains in the NCD management by using mHealth solutions.
  • Enabling mHealth to be deployed in national and regional level health services and to deliver large scale benefits, first of the selected entities, and later in the rest of Europe.
  • Becoming the focal point for expertise on mHealth in the EU and identifying and highlighting trends and gaps in policies, standards, regulations, etc. and best practices and barriers to the creation of consistent mHealth infrastructure and strategy.
  • Unique platform to support innovation in and up-scaling of mHealth by convening cross sector stakeholders (young entrepreneurs, start-ups, governments, technical officers etc.).
  • Creating synergies with the existing EU platforms of stakeholders such as eHealth network of Member States and also the EU EIP on Active and Healthy Ageing. (requirement, scope, impact)