Data Crossing Borders to Support Health

full frame shot of abstract pattern
Photo by Sabrina Gelbart on


Earlier this week Finland and Estonia announced they would be testing the exchange of health data across borders, allowing citizens in Europe to have digital prescriptions to be seamlessly exchanged as they travel within Europe. The initial service will cover a basic patient summary and digital prescribing according to the early deployment of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). Member states and the European Union fund the eHealth Digital Service Infrastructure (eHDSI or eHealth DSI).

EU Digital Health Transformation

The health data exchange has three priorities:

  1. Citizens’ secure access to their health data, also across borders– enabling citizens to access their health data across the EU;
  2. Personalized medicine through shared European data infrastructure – allowing researchers and other professionals to pool resources (data expertise, computing processing, and storage capacities) across the EU;
  3. Citizen empowerment with digital tools for user feedback and person-centered care – using digital tools to empower people to look after their health, stimulate prevention and enable feedback and interaction between users and healthcare providers.



The US is also pursuing data exchanges between health systems, universities and government agencies to better leverage data to support more efficient healthcare delivery. It will be essential to address data privacy, transparency, and ethical data use agreements as we enter this new era of data exchange.  The early experience with the EU efforts will be closely watched.


Thanks for reading – Trina

(Opinions are my own)



eHealth Data Exchange

Estonia and Finland eHealth Data Exchange

EU Digital Transformation



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