In conclusion

TeNDER is officially ending this week (30 April 2023). It has been a remarkable learning journey that has culminated in the successful rollout of the third wave of pilots, the identification of good practices and lessons learned, as well as a timely and thought-provoking final event on health, law, and technology (HELT) hosted by the VUB.

During the event, Nicholas Vretos from CERTH presented TeNDER’s experiences and engaged in a lively discussion with other panelists and the audience on the challenges and needs associated with interoperability in health data sharing. HOPE for provided dissemination support leading up to the event and throughout the day itself. We would like to express our gratitude to the VUB team, not only for organizing the HELT 2023 symposium, but also for their thoughtful contributions to the ethical and legal dimensions of the project, which enriched TeNDER significantly.

We would also like to extend our heartfelt thanks to all consortium members across Europe, whose hard work and commitment to a humane approach to digital assistive technologies yielded important lessons and research contributions. The project’s research papers, conference proceedings, and public deliverables are available in the public domain; the latter via this link: Scientific publications related to TeNDER will also be accessible via commonly used journal databases.

Finally, we would like to thank each and every one of you for sharing this journey with us. It has been a privilege to work alongside such talented and dedicated individuals: patients, clinicians, and collaborative partners among many more!

TeNDER to participate in VUB-hosted symposium

The increasing digitisation and interconnectivity of society are driving the transformation of the healthcare sector and individual experiences and perceptions of healthcare. The ability to share data, computing power, and to apply more complex processing to health data are changing our understanding of what health data is and how it should be used. Furthermore, technological advancements have led to increased generation and storage of health data, with demand for it in scientific research rapidly increasing.

However, health data governance remains a special case in the EU data policy and data protection legal framework, leading to fragmentation in the regulatory picture. Efforts are being made to remove the barriers to the free flow of health data, with the proposed European Health Data Space (EHDS) aiming to enhance individual control of their health data and build an effective mechanism for accessing health data for innovation, research, and policymaking.

The first Health, Law, and Technology (HELT) Symposium will be held on 26 April 2023 in Brussels. This inaugural event will center around the sharing of health data in an interconnected society, bringing together stakeholders to discuss the challenges and potential impact of initiatives such as the EHDS.

The HELT Symposium will feature four panels that address various aspects of the EHDS proposal:

  • The first panel will discuss the role of EHDS in the creation of an EU single market for data, its position in the legal landscape, and relevant benefits and challenges.
  • The second panel will focus on the importance of interoperability in health data sharing, with various stakeholders sharing their insights regarding the needs and challenges in developing a practical interoperability solution.
  • The third panel will examine the legal framework for data sharing schemes and the clash between fundamental rights and the various interests at stake, as well as potential avenues for striking that balance.
  • The fourth and final panel will address the challenges and opportunities presented by the demand for secondary use of health data for scientific research.

Join us in Brussels in April by registering through this link!

Outreach activities

As the third – and final – wave of piloting continues, TeNDER partners have been using a variety of methods to communicate the project with health professionals and the general population. These include:

  1. Workshops and conferences: partners have participated in conferences to share information about the project and gather feedback from health professionals. These events have provided an opportunity for attendees to learn about the project, ask questions, and provide input.
  2. Printed materials: partners have distributed brochures to share information about the project in formats tailored for different stakeholders (i.e., patients with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia, Parkinson’s disease, or cardiovascular disorders, as well as health care professionals).

Overall, the project are using a variety of communication methods to ensure that health professionals and the general population have access to accurate and up-to-date information about the TeNDER project and its goals.

A year in publications

From technical papers on design challenges in machine learning in resource optimization to reviews of user-centred methods for developing assistive technologies, 2021-2022 was an important period for TeNDER publications.

We look forward to sharing more about our VUB partners’ contributions to legal and ethical research in eHealth and assistive technology. During 2023, in the final stretch of the project, Harvard’s Petrie-Flom Center will publish a chapter on the “Challenges of remote patient care in the EU legal framework: data protection, cybersecurity, and medical devices regulation,” based partly on work done by the VUB within the framework of TeNDER.

Check our publications page in the Spring for this and more!

#WorldAlzMonth 2022 – “Know Dementia, Know Alzheimer’s”

Each year during September, people unite globally to raise awareness about Alzheimer’s Disease and other forms of dementia.

Alzheimer’s Disease International gathers resources in multiple languages and joins its 105 members worldwide to support research, raise funds for treatment and potential cures, improve our knowledge about dementia, and fight the stigma associated with it, among other activities.

In line with 2021’s campaign, which focused on the importance of knowing the warning signs of dementia and seeking a prompt diagnosis, 2022’s campaign will focus on ways communities, policies, and institutions can support people suffering from dementia and those who surround them.

Join us and other initiatives, organisations, and institutions supporting this year’s campaign!

Modern eHealth applications

The adoption of a well-designed eHealth application in everyday health practice can provide holistic solutions to extend the autonomy of patients while improving their Quality of Life (QoL).

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Danaja Fabcic Povse (VUB) presents paper at Harvard Law School conference

On 15 June 2022,  Danaja Fabcic Povse spoke at the Harvard Law School Petrie-Flom Center’s annual conference “Diagnosing in the Home: The Ethical, Legal, and Regulatory Challenges and Opportunities of Digital Diagnostics and Therapeutics Outside of Traditional Clinical Settings.”

Her paper analyses the challenges EU law presents for remote patient care technologies, drawing upon the early results of the TeNDER project concerning data protection, cybersecurity, and regulation of medical devices.

For more information, please check the conference website.