Health reaches agreements to include all autonomous communities and cities in the network that shares clinical data and electronic prescriptions between EU countries

News - 2023.6.1

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The Ministry of Health has already signed the agreements for the incorporation of all the country's autonomous communities and cities into the European Union's cross-border healthcare network (E-Health Network). In this way, the Spanish population will be able to access clinical data and electronic prescriptions from other European Union countries and, reciprocally, the citizens of these Member States will also have access to this service in Spain.

With the signing of Cantabria's accession agreement, Health completes the map of commitment to the interoperability of European medical records and electronic prescriptions. The interoperability of the summarised medical record and the interoperability of electronic prescription and dispensing will be progressively implemented in the territories until it becomes a reality for all European citizens. In Spain, ten communities currently have an active service linked to this network. The rest have subscribed to the commitment.

In this regard, the entire population registered with the National Health System (NHS) of Andalusia, Aragon, Catalonia, Community of Madrid, Community of Valencia, Navarre, and the Basque Country can now share their medical record summary with health professionals in Croatia, France, Luxembourg, Malta and Portugal.

In turn, the European electronic prescription interoperability service is already active in Andalusia, Aragon, the Canary Islands, Castile and Leon, Catalonia, the Community of Madrid, Extremadura and the Basque Country. Patients from these communities can obtain their prescriptions from participating pharmacies in Croatia, Estonia, Finland, Poland and Portugal that offer the service.

In turn, patients from the countries where these services are available can be treated in the Spanish National Health System using their pre-existing clinical information and accessing prescriptions for medicines prescribed in their countries of origin at any of the pharmacies in the aforementioned autonomous communities.

Agreements for the interoperability of clinical information

The Government of Spain and the Member States of the European Union signed in November 2020 the formal agreement that allows the interoperability of clinical information, mainly the medical record summary and the prescription of medicines between their territories. The autonomous communities have been joining this initiative by signing the corresponding adhesion agreements with the Ministry of Health, a process that has now been completed with the incorporation of the Cantabrian community, so that the entire National Health System has assumed this commitment.

The regional health services, once the agreement has been signed, must make the corresponding adaptations to their systems, following the criteria established by the European Commission and with the support of the Ministry of Health. After carrying out the relevant tests, the Ministry validates the process and authorises each autonomous community to join the National Health System Services Node it operates, which organises and manages the flow of patients' clinical information between Spain and EU countries.

Spain has actively participated in this European Commission project since its initial design, contributing its models of interoperable summarised medical records and electronic prescriptions for the National Health System, which have served as a reference scheme for the EU. Similarly, Spain is a benchmark in its actual implementation, being one of the countries with the greatest deployment of these services.

Non official translation