One forum in two venues for two days - 170 speakers from 21 countries, hundreds of delegates and visitors, 15 municipalities, 15 European projects, 41 sessions, workshops, panels, presentations and open discussions brought healthcare and technology stakeholders, researchers, entrepreneurs, representatives of the EU and local governments together to share results of their work and explore ways of cooperation. These are the numbers that defined eHealth Forum + Festival which wrapped up this year’s events at Megaron International Conference Center and Techopolis City of Athens, Wednesday night, October 26.

During the eHealth Forum, key stakeholders from the European Commission, among them the Commissions’ head of eHealth Mr. Miguel González-Sancho, leading innovation companies like IBM and Microsoft, municipalities and government agencies, research centers and eHealth ecosystems had the chance to present each from their own unique perspective, the major issues they face and share their knowledge and experience. It was a common conclusion that if eHealth applications are to make a real impact, they need to address real needs of everyday life, the needs of citizens and patients, the needs of doctors and healthcare professionals, the needs of the state and the needs of the economy.

Dr. Lisa McCann, Senior Lecturer in Cancer Care and Lead for eHealth School of Health Sciences, University of Surrey, presented the eSMART project: “Randomised controlled trial to evaluate electronic Symptom Management using the Advanced Symptom Management System (ASyMS) Remote Technology for patients with cancers” and its program model of Personalized and Anticipating care, the eSMART study, and the future possibilities of connected health by way of seamless and complete management of health related data for the anticipated 78.5 million patients predicted to be using home health technology by 2020.

 

The impressive strides in further development of Big Data, artificial intelligence and new wearables are paving the way for radical changes in healthcare, while reducing costs and helping change perception and behavior (patients+doctors+researchers+insurance+state). Remarking on the importance of the eHealth Forum, John Crawford, Healthcare Industry Leader, Europe, IBM Industry Academy Member, wrote: “The eHealth Forum provided a great opportunity to understand recent progress with eHealth in Europe, and to re-imagine our future care systems with real experts.