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Satnews Daily
March 17th, 2014

ITU—Health Data Exchange Spec Enabled (Comms)

[SatNews] Following calls for increased global coordination of standards enabling e-health, ITU has offered first stage approval to an important specification enabling an exchange of multimedia health data between a health provider, a controlling function and patient.

The new standard will enable different e-health systems to smoothly exchange patient health data in both low- and high-resource settings, making it ideal for applications in both developed and developing countries.

e-Health experts explain that a combination of a common data definition with connectivity across different systems—ranging from the personal health and point-of-care devices described in Recommendation ITU-T H.810 to a range of health management back-ends—will provide simple, secure and scalable interoperability.

ITU Secretary-General Hamadoun I. Touré noted, “In addition to technical issues, discussions on e-health encompass legal, ethical, cultural, economic and regional aspects. We have seen increased impetus by the e-health community to engage with ITU in order to facilitate a rapid rollout of these technologies that have such a valuable role to play in bolstering global health initiatives.”

The development of Recommendation ITU-T H.860, Multimedia e-health data exchange services: Architecture, services and data dictionary was led by ITU Member Platform Health, a non-profit organization, based on successful reference implementations in a range of countries in the Middle East, Asia and Africa.

The common health schema of Recommendation ITU-T H.860 is applicable to a wide spectrum of diseases (non-communicable, communicable, maternal/child, trauma, etc.), interventions (preventive, curative, palliative), and health IT systems (from simple standalone, to integrated care, web services and mobile applications).