Interdisciplinary e-health services for the healthcare sector in North Rhine-Westphalia
The goal of the project “I/E-Health-NRW” is to test and establish the existing standardized technological methods in model regions in North Rhine-Westphalia under consideration of the German Digital Healthcare Act and support for migration to the telematics infrastructure. This will allow registered doctors and hospitals to exchange patient data using the electronic case file and KV-Connect data. Close cooperation with manufacturers of medical practice information systems and hospital information systems in the project aims to realize integration into the existing primary systems, thereby promoting acceptance by users. Creating a uniform address directory is another goal so that participants in the care scenarios can be uniquely identified. The project is supported by key players in self-administration, healthcare, industry, and science. Digital Healthcare e.V., an association founded for the purpose by Krankenhausgesellschaft NRW, the Kassenärztlichen Vereinigung Nordrhein, the Kassenärztlichen Vereinigung Westfalen-Lippe, and Aachen University Hospital is the consortium manager.
Testing is taking place in model regions based on specific patient care steps:
- Borken/Ahaus: Dementia file
- Münster/Warendorf district: Geriatrics file
- Dortmund: Pediatrics file
- Düren/Aachen: Emergency care file
Efficient and effective cooperation between various institutions and professions participating in patient treatment requires standardized electronic communication processes across institutions, such as the electronic doctor’s letter or electronic case file. These technological processes already exist today, but are not fully utilized in cross-sector patient care scenarios because, aside from the technical infrastructure, additional overall infrastructure services and interoperability agreements are needed, for example to establish processes and semantics in patient care scenarios.
Since Fraunhofer ISST already participated in the development of the electronic case file more than ten years ago, it has extensive expertise in this research area and is therefore handling the manufacturer-neutral implementation of the EFA 2.0 standard and the implementation of the EFA 2.0 KV-Connect interface in the project. Fraunhofer ISST is assisting the case file provider and advising the technical partners in the EFA 2.0 linking of the IT systems involved, in addition to ensuring that integration complies with the specifications. Furthermore, Fraunhofer ISST was commissioned to develop an EFA 2.0-compliant web portal. The portal based on the EFA 2.0 standards provides alternative access to the EFA 2.0 infrastructure. This makes it possible for registered doctors in particular to exchange documents according to the standards, even if the medical practice information systems do not yet support EFA 2.0 integration.
The project creates a digital environment to improve the patient care situations in the four model regions mentioned above. An evaluation of the implementation is being conducted using defined criteria. It is however possible to add further patient care situations through Digital Healthcare e.V. and to support these using the electronic case file. Thus Fraunhofer ISST’s EFA portal is already being used in other fields of application today, for example to support patient care in the context of COVID-19.
- Verein Digital Healthcare NRW e.V. (Konsortialführer)
- Partner Kassenärztliche Vereinigung Westfalen-Lippe
- Kassenärztliche Vereinigung Nordrhein
- KV-IT GmbH
- Healthcare IT Solutions der Uniklinik Aachen
- Krankenhausgesellschaft Nordrhein-Westfalen
- Caritas Trägergesellschaft West
- CompuGroup Medical, Duria eG
- Fachhochschule Dortmund
- St. Franziskus-Stiftung Münster
- Klinikum Westmünsterland
- Krankenhaus Düre
- Klinikum Dortmund
- Telekom Healthcare Solutions
The project "I/E-Health-NRW" is subsidized by the European Union and the state of North Rhine-Westphalia.