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Digital solutions have the potential to improve the life of millions of European patients and transform the way we deliver care at country level. However, the uptake of digital solutions is still low and patients are not fully benefiting from technologies that could empower them to better control their diseases.

The European Patient Innovation Summit (EPIS) has been addressing these barriers since 2016, providing a multi-country platform for patient advocates to learn more about digital technologies and discuss how to embed a stronger patient voice in digital health. EPIS is funded by Novartis and organised by a Steering Committee of patient representatives from different disease areas, including EFA.

500 participants from 18 different countries

Taking place as usual in November, this year’s EPIS involved 500 participants from 18 different countries who enjoyed speeches that depicted where the digital revolution is going and how the future looks like for health systems, focussing in particular on Artificial Intelligence and Electronic Health Records (EHR).

EHRs resulted to be the most interesting technology for the patients during the breakout discussions held in each country: many benefits were identified, including the quick access to up-to-date patient records, the opportunity to schedule appointments and share information with the doctors, the reduction of duplication of testing. At the same time, there are concerns and challenges around it, as for example the interoperability and need for higher input by the patient on the data.

More in general, the voice of the patient was considered crucial in increasing the uptake of digital technologies in health, and there is a strong need for a framework that can enable the patient community to be systematically integrated in decision making processes on this topic.