XIII EUROPEAN PATIENTS’ RIGHTS DAY 2019, 10th April 2019 European Parliament

Delivering patient value throughout the healthcare system
Focus on Digital Health and Personalized Medicine

 

Patient access to digital health innovation must be a shared responsibility of all the stakeholders involved in the health sector: private and public bodies have to collaborate.

In view of the next European elections, we ask more certainties that Digital Health and Personalized Medicine will be considered by the European Institutions among the priorities for the next years.

This was the key message of the conference on Digital Health and Personalized Medicine that has been celebrated today as second event of the XIII European Patients' Rights Day, held at the European Parliament in Brussels and organized by Active Citizenship Network, the European Branch of the Italian association Cittadinanzattiva.

The event was hosted by MEP David Borrelli and it was realized thanks to the support of Roche.

The healthcare field is currently undergoing a serious revolution. One the one side, we are witnessing a growing demand for healthcare due to the gradual increase in the population’s average age and the consequent increase in chronic diseases. On the other side, scientific and technological innovations are subjecting medicine to constant changes, leading the evolution of treatments in personalized medicine.

We are moving away from the idea that the same drug works for everyone, as we are aware that, in order to guarantee the highest efficiency of a treatment, it is essential to take into consideration patients’ genetic differences.

The remarkable progress on personalized treatments opens the door to a wide range of issues. Among these, one issue is that several patients are forced to rely on very expensive therapies for decades. Consequently, surviving cancer could remain a luxury for rich people, and national health systems could collapse because of the huge number of patients depending on these therapies. In order to avoid disparities among patients, civic associations and patient advocacy groups officially call the new EU institutions to bring these therapies in our daily lives in a more equitable way.

Personalized medicine represents a captivating challenge for citizens and patients’ associations in which they want to participate, claiming their right to be informed. Invest in digital health literacy is a precondition to increase empowerment and engagement of patients and citizens on this topic.

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