eHealth (also written e-health) is a relatively recent term for healthcare practice which is supported by electronic processes and communication. The term is inconsistently used: some would argue it is interchangeable with health care informatics and a sub set of Health informatics, while others use it in the narrower sense of healthcare practice using the Internet. The term can encompass a range of services that are at the edge of medicine/healthcare and information technology:

* Electronic Medical Records: enable easy communication of patient data between different healthcare professionals (GPs, specialists, care team, pharmacy)
* Telemedicine: includes all types of physical and psychological measurements that do not require a patient to travel to a specialist. When this service works, patients need to travel less to a specialist or conversely the specialist has a larger catchment area.
* Evidence Based Medicine: entails a system that provides information on appropriate treatment under certain patient conditions. A healthcare professional can look up whether his/her diagnosis is in line with scientific research. The advantage is that the data can be kept up-to-date.Fact|date=February 2007
* Consumer Health Informatics (or citizen-oriented information provision): both healthy individuals and patients want to be informed on medical topics.
* Health knowledge management (or specialist-oriented information provision): "e.g." in an overview of latest medical journals, best practice guidelines or epidemiological tracking.
* Virtual healthcare teams: consist of healthcare professionals who collaborate and share information on patients through digital equipment (for transmural care).
* mHealth or m-Health: includes the use of mobile devices in collecting aggregate and patient level health data, providing healthcare information to practitioners, researchers, and patients, real-time monitoring of patient vitals, and direct provision of care (via mobile telemedicine).
* Medical research uses eHealth Grids that provide powerful computing and data management capabilities to handle large amounts of heterogenous data. [Jochen Fingberg, Marit Hansen et al.: " [ Integrating Data Custodians in eHealth Grids – Security and Privacy Aspects] ", NEC Lab Report, 2006.]


e-Health is defined as: "electronic information and interactions connecting people and communities to health services."Ministry of Health NZ, e-Health Working Group

A seminal 2001 definition published in the article [ What is e-health?] J Med Internet Res 2001;3(2):e20, by eHealth researcher Gunther Eysenbach is among the most frequently cited and reads:

"e-health is an emerging field in the intersection of medical informatics, public health and business, referring to health services and information delivered or enhanced through the Internet and related technologies. In a broader sense, the term characterizes not only a technical development, but also a state-of-mind, a way of thinking, an attitude, and a commitment for networked, global thinking, to improve health care locally, regionally, and worldwide by using information and communication technology."

[ EU ICTs for Health] :"eHealth describes the application of information and communications technologies across the whole range of functions that affect the health sector, from the doctor to the hospital manager, via nurses, data processing specialists, social security administrators and - of course - the patients."

An article by Oh et al. (2005) attempted to examine all existing literature on the subject.Oh H, Rizo C, Enkin M, Jadad A. What Is eHealth (3): A Systematic Review of Published Definitions in the J Med Internet Res 2005;7(1):e1 [ article]

One of the earliest descriptions of the eHealth field was published in 2001. Eng, TR. The eHealth Landscape: A Terrain Map of Emerging Information and Communication Technologies in Health and Health Care. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. []

ee also

*European Institute for Health Records
*Health 2.0
*Health Informatics



* Hammond WE., "eHealth interoperability", Stud Health Technol Inform. 2008;134:245-53
* Iakovidis I, Purcarea O., "eHealth in Europe: from Vision to Reality", Stud Health Technol Inform. 2008;134:163-8
* Gibbons MC., "A historical overview of health disparities and the potential of eHealth solutions", J Med Internet Res. 2005 Oct 4;7(5):e50
* Olsson S, Lymberis A, Whitehouse D., "European Commission activities in eHealth", Int J Circumpolar Health. 2004 Dec;63(4):310-6

External links

* [ Centre for Global eHealth Innovation] (Canada)
* [ Centro de Educación Virtual y Simulación, División de Educación Fundación Santa Fe de Bogotá] (Colombia)
* [ Norwegian centre for Telemedicine] (WHO Collaborating Centre)
* [ eHealth News EU Portal]
* [ e-Health] (European Union)
* [ International Society for Telemedicine & eHealth]
* [ Med-e-Tel - The International Educational and Networking Forum for eHealth, Telemedicine and Health ICT]
* [ Warwick eHealth Research Group]
* [ eHealth Initiative]
* [ e-Health Nurses Network] (UK)
* [ LiTel - Telehealth League of Federal University of Minas Gerais] - [ UFMG] Brazil
* [ The Australian e-Health Research Centre] (Australia)
* [ eHealthLAB: knowledge center showcasing eHealth best-practices]
* [ APEC e-Health Portal Site] (Korea)
* [ Health 2.0 Information Social Network]
* [ British Computer society Health Informatics Forum, encompassing e-Health]
* [ Smart Systems for Health Agency (Ontario, Canada)]
* [ HealthcareMagic (Bangalore, India)]

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