1. Introduction



The European Commission (hereinafter ‘Commission’) in an overview of ‘eHealth: Digital health and care’ [1] says “Digital Health and care refers to tools and services that use information and communication technologies (ICTs) to improve prevention, diagnosis, treatment, monitoring and management of health-related issues and to monitor and manage lifestyle-habits that impact health”. Building upon precedent initiatives enhancing the creation of a Digital Single Market (the digital transition) health is one of the sectors included in this agenda, which includes:

  • building the eHealth Digital Service Infrastructure to allow e-prescriptions and patient summaries to be exchanged cross-border between healthcare providers.
  • tap into the huge potential of health data to support medical research with the aim of improving prevention, diagnosis, treatments, medicines and medical devices.
  • empower citizens, making it easier for them to take a greater role in the management of their own health

Under ‘eHealth: Digital health and care’ the Commission publishes current and ongoing activities advancing and reshaping the legal/regulatory framework and incorporating digital health progress and emerging capabilities. This includes documents/guidelines from the ‘eHealth Network’1

Examples are:

  • GUIDELINE on the electronic exchange of health data under Cross-Border Directive 2011/24/EU [2], General Guidelines, Release 3, 10 June 2022
  • ePrescription and eDispensation of Authorised Medicinal Products, GUIDELINE on the electronic exchange of health data under Cross-Border Directive 2011/24/EU, 10 June 2022
  • ePrescription & eIDAS integrated vision, 01 August 2022
  • European Health Union: A European Health Data Space for people and science, 03 May 2022

Note 1: The eHealth Network is a voluntary network, set up under article 14 of Directive 2011/24/EU. It provides a platform of Member States' competent authorities dealing with eHealth.


[1] European Commission eHealth: Digital health and care:  https://health.ec.europa.eu/ehealth-digital-health-and-care_en
[2] Directive 2011/24/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 March 2011 on the application of patients’ rights in cross-border healthcare. https://eur-lex.europa.eu/eli/dir/2011/24/oj