July 2, 2014

News from Almedalen: mHealth – is Sweden doing enough?

Sahlgrenska I.C. is participating in this year’s Almedalen week. It takes place in Visby, Sweden, and has become a venue where politicians and representatives from different kinds of organizations interested in political and social issues meet in an informal setting.

We kicked of this morning attending a seminar on mobile health hosted by Martin Andreasson (Moderate party), member of the Regional Assembly of Västra Götaland and Sahlgrenska I.C.’s executive board. Mobile health, or M-health as it is often called, is a further development of the e-health era. The world is getting more and more digitalised for a reason. So, can we use new techniques to battle some of the challenges facing swedish healthcare? Is a modern healthcare information environment utopian or reality in a few years?

Among the panel participants were representatives from a patient organization, the academy and the industry. With their different perspectives they contributed to a dynamic seminar. Together they concluded that the technique itself is not the issue, it is already developed and ready to use. The real challenge is to change the information systems currently used within healthcare, which also demands a change in user behaviour. Although this will take time, partly because it requires adapting the legislation, there is no doubt that it can become a reality.

Right now the European Commission is launching a public consultation on the Green Paper on mobile health, inviting comments on the barriers and issues related to the use of mHealth.

M-health seminar in Almedalen, hosted by Sahlgrenska I.C. board member Martin Andreasson (first from left)
mHealth seminar in Almedalen, hosted by Sahlgrenska I.C. board member Martin Andreasson (first from left)

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