The goal of digital transformation in healthcare is to improve the quality, efficiency, and accessibility of healthcare services while reducing costs and increasing patient satisfaction. The COVID-19 pandemic has propelled this process by making healthcare tangible to many European residents for the first time via telemedicine consultations and apps that facilitate administrative functions, provide health information, and enable patient-healthcare provider dialogue. Other recent policy developments at the European level also aim to harness the power of patient health data and artificial intelligence in healthcare.
For ordinary people to benefit from these changes, inequalities in the distribution of digital skills and literacy need to be addressed. Currently, 42% of EU residents lack basic digital skills, with a higher share of those residing in Eastern member states. EPHA’s work on digital transformation thus aims to promote inclusive digital health policy in the EU and to raise the issue of digital health literacy higher on the political agenda.
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