Opdateret 9. november 2020
The ambition of MedCom is to provide the Danish healthcare sector with the best possible conditions for offering treatment and care for patients, thus ensuring that relevant information is available when it is needed across the sectors. MedComs achieves this through a number of projects and activities.
The main implementation of IT solutions across sectors is anchored in the regions, municipalities, general practitioners (GPs), and other specialists, such as the providers of health services and their IT vendors. The collaboration is often the result of health and financial agreements made between the state, regions, and the primary sector.
The role of MedCom is to provide digital solutions that connect all the healthcare providers, as information on patients and citizens is to be shared amongst them. This could, for instance, be the development and subsequent implementation of a new or updated technical communication standard, e.g. a discharge summary that is shared by the hospital with the patient’s GP, or a rehabilitation plan from the hospital to the municipality as a patient transitions from specialised hospital rehabilitation to municipal rehabilitation services. Additionally, MedCom supports local implementation and activities through coordination of national initiatives and projects towards joint cross-sectoral goals.
All activities happen in close collaboration with regions, municipalities, the primary sector, and IT vendors.
Overall, MedCom engages in four types of activities:
1. Test and certification of communication standards
Through the past 25 years, MedCom has developed standards for the exchange of healthcare data. These standards are the foundation for exchange of relevant data between the different parts of the healthcare sector. MedCom develops, documents, tests, and certifies IT vendors’ implementations of these standards and offers courses, support, and consultancy as part of the process. For this, MedCom operates a quality management system and is also ISO 9001:2015 certified.
Recently, MedCom started a process to convert all its standards, which have been made in EDIfact and OIO-XML formats, to HL7® FHIR®. This transformation will happen over the coming years and will be done in close planning and collaboration with the healthcare providers and IT vendors.
At the same time, MedCom will also modernise the infrastructure used to exchange these messages. First, the European developed infrastructure for exchange of documents and data, eDelivery, will be tested and later nationally implemented in the healthcare domain.
Both activities are a central part of MedCom’s work in the coming years and they aim to support the emerging needs within the healthcare sector to share data in a more secure, reliable, and faster way by using international standards and infrastructure building blocks.
2. National coordination and implementation across sectors
MedCom coordinates projects, offers support and information to health professionals, healthcare providers, and IT vendors across the Danish healthcare ecosystem through sectorial and national project management, statistical monitoring of implementation and roll-out of digital solutions and communication standards as well as hosting user and networking events.
MedCom is also involved in many professional and national committees on eHealth, including the preparation of new national initiatives.
Currently, MedCom has a specific focus on the digital foundation for better collaboration between the social and healthcare sector as well as on national implementation of better digital tools for the GP, supporting even better collaboration in the healthcare system.
3. Systems management
MedCom is systems manager for three cross-sectoral IT solutions - the Danish Health Data Network; the Joint Video Infrastructure; and the National Home-Monitoring Database. Consequently, MedCom has the responsibility for tasks such as requirement specifications, tenders, follow-up on contracts, surveillance, information security, support, user groups and further development of these public and shared IT solutions.
4. International activities
MedCom has a longstanding tradition for participation in international projects and networks to seek inspiration and, in return, share Danish experiences abroad. Over time, MedCom has participated in many EU-funded projects closely associated to the core activities of MedCom which can benefit the continued digitalisation of the Danish health sector.
Furthermore, MedCom is a lifelong member of EHTEL, a pan-European multidisciplinary stakeholder organisation in eHealth, active in international standardisation activities, particularly in the HL7 community, and in Nordic networks.