CHF 400 Million for Digisanté, a programme to transform the Swiss Healthcare system
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The Swiss Federal Council wants to start Digisanté, a programme for the digital transformation of the healthcare system. The aim is to facilitate the exchange of patient data, and to improve efficiency, treatment quality and patient safety.
The Swiss healthcare system is good, but it is lagging behind when it comes to digitisation. For this reason, the Federal Council has decided to invest CHF 400 million over ten years to create a vast IT infrastructure. This will improve the exchange of medical data between healthcare providers, such as doctors, hospitals, pharmacists, insurers and the authorities, with the aim of making the system more efficient. When patients go to the doctor or hospital, their data is already entered into an IT system.
However, the data is often transmitted poorly, or not at all, from one healthcare provider to another. “Sometimes, the same indication has to be entered several times, tests and analyses have to be repeated, and the information cannot be reused”, explains Berne in a press release. It also points to a lack of standardisation in data entry.The Federal Council therefore wants to create a “Swiss Health Data Space” to improve the quality of treatment, efficiency, transparency and patient safety. Under this infrastructure, all players will have access to common basic services, such as registers, interfaces and applications for secure data exchange.
Berne points out that the data will also have to be usable by researchers, citing cancer monitoring as an example. The programme will have to take account of the federal structure of the Swiss healthcare system. “The Confederation will only intervene when a national basis is necessary and cannot be put in place by the cantons or private service providers,” explains Berne. “Its many players will be able to develop, acquire and operate their own services efficiently. The result will be a network of IT systems that can exchange information continuously”, the government goes on to explain.
Resistant to cyberattacks
Digitalisation brings with it the risk of cyber-attacks and hence the theft of highly sensitive data. The Confederation is aware of this, but assures us that data protection is the foundation of the programme and that it will withstand the onslaught of hackers.
The DigiSanté programme was drawn up by the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) in collaboration with the Federal Statistical Office (FSO). It will run for ten years (from 2025 to 2034), encompassing around 50 projects and divided into four sections: “Prerequisites for digital transformation”, “National infrastructure”, “Digitisation of government services” and “Secondary use of data for planning, management and research”.
Source: Swiss Federal Council