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Innovation in healthcare - a CSA towards using pre-commercial procurement and public procurement of innovative solutions in healthcare systems

The objective of this coordination and support action (CSA) is to create a Europe-wide consortium of healthcare providers and public procurers in the health and social care sector that define together unmet procurement needs to implement innovative solutions in healthcare.

The consortium should prepare future procurement topics to conduct:

  • A PCP/PPI to implement rapid diagnostic tools for infectious diseases in clinical practise (at least 1 topic). To assure the compatibility and interoperability between infectious disease diagnostics and avoid technological standardisation issues, public health sector procurers that participate in this CSA should also develop specifications that are suitable for Europe-wide deployment of the innovative diagnostics.
  • One or more PCP/PPIs to drive the shift towards health systems reform. Clinicians, patients, public procurers in healthcare systems, health and social care facility managers, and health insurers/payers should work jointly to identify the gaps and needs that will lead to the development of new innovative solutions for patient-centred integrated healthcare.

Activities supported by this CSA should include the following aspects:

  • preparation of innovation procurement calls to be published in topic SC1-BHC-20-2020 of the Work Programme 2018-2020. That topic will follow the specific requirements for innovation procurement PCP/PPI supported by Horizon 2020 grants as set out in General Annex E of the work programme.
  • open market consultation with the industry, including on technical and service readiness
  • analysis of the suitable testing environments
  • analysis of differences in legal public procurement framework for the participating procurers in health and social care,
  • market analysis and analysis of potential barriers (standardisation, certification, regulatory requirements, intellectual property rights, contracting models, payment schemes)
  • consultations with relevant stakeholders, end-users (consumer organisations, reimbursement bodies) to prepare for a future market uptake of the solutions.

Innovative solutions for healthcare have the potential to improve patient care in European healthcare setting. Integrated care[[Integrated care considers initiatives seeking to improve outcomes of care by overcoming issues of fragmentation through linkage or coordination of services of different providers along the continuum of care]] principles allow care for patients to be better coordinated, and jointly planned by the health and social care professionals across vertically and horizontally relevant preventive and curative services. To respond to changing organisation of care and support the transition of hospital services towards a patient-centred integrated care model, healthcare providers are encouraged to join forces and create demand for such innovations through public joint procurement, serving the triple aim of healthcare: better care experience, better care outcomes, and more efficient care.

Implementation of timely and correct diagnostics for infectious diseases that will speed up the identification of the causative infectious disease pathogens, resistance and drug susceptibility is crucial for tailoring the antimicrobial treatment to ensure appropriate antimicrobial drug use and to reduce unnecessary prescriptions. As innovative rapid diagnostics are significantly more expensive than culture-based diagnostics that are widely used since decades, the uptake of these new tests in hospitals and especially primary care centres has been limited. To respond to this clinical and public health need and to facilitate the uptake of innovative rapid diagnostics for infectious diseases into healthcare practice, contracting authorities can act together to create demand for such innovations through public joint procurement.

However, before joint innovation procurement can be undertaken, first the cross-border cooperation between interested healthcare procurers must be established to counter fragmentation of delivering innovative solutions in healthcare settings[[This call topic is complementary but separate from DTH-10-2019-2020 for digital solutions for health and care services]].

  • Improved networking of health and social care providers and public procurers in healthcare systems to identify stakeholders and specifications for a strategy to launch procurement for innovative diagnostics for infectious diseases, and for innovative solutions in integrated care.
  • Optimised procurement strategy for innovative infectious disease diagnostics and for innovative solutions in integrated care.

The Commission considers that a proposal requesting an EU contribution between EUR 1.5 and 2 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.