#1 Digital Health

EQuiP Working Group on Digital Health
By Ulrik Bak Kirk (Denmark) and Ilkka Kunnamo (Finland)
EQuiP Working Group Leaders on Digital Health

The term Digital Health is rooted in eHealth, which is defined as 'the use of information and communications technology in support of health and health-related fields'. Mobile health (mHealth) is a subset of eHealth and is defined as 'the use of mobile wireless technologies for health'. More recently, the term Digital Health was introduced as 'a broad umbrella term encompassing eHealth - which includes mHealth - as well as emerging areas, such as the use of advanced computing sciences in big data, genomics and artificial intelligence'.
 
While recognizing the innovative role that digital technologies can play in strengthening the health system, there is an equally important need to evaluate their contributing effects and ensure that such investments do not inappropriately divert resources from alternative, non-digital approaches.
 
 
Media and Resources
The WONCA Policy Statement on eHealth was finalized in April 2016 and published in June 2016. The statement emphasizes patient participation and empowerment on electronic platforms, the role of the GP as the coordinator of care enabled by the “one patient – one record” concept, and secondary use of health data collected in primary care.  
 
The WP will promote the implementation of the statement in collaboration with WICC and EQuiP.
 
According to a survey for members of WONCA groups in 2014, the most important objective of the WP is to describe the key functionalities that eHealth should provide for family doctors. This topic is discussed in WONCA Europe World Book of Family Medicine 2015 ("How to build an ideal healthcare information system" http://bit.ly/1OVOL5q) and in a presentation at the WICC meeting in 2016 http://bit.ly/2f0khFi.