Improving data sharing on a European level published by Dove Medical Press


ClinicoEconomics and Outcomes Research has published the original research “Scaling up health knowledge at European level requires sharing integrated data: an approach for collection of database specification”.

As corresponding author Dr Enrica Menditto says “Healthcare-related databases have been widely described as an excellent opportunity for research secondary data for both academic and policy research. Under the umbrella of the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP-AHA), collaborative work conducted by the partners of the Adherence Action Group identified the use of observational databases to monitor medication-taking behavior in the elderly. A collection of databases characteristics was devised to collaborate in building consensus on the use of common elements and measures to facilitate data sharing.”

Dr Menditto continues “Combining databases from multiple countries exploiting common structural elements will help increasing the cohorts both on numerical and geographical coverage aspects. At the moment there is not a gold standard to perform multiple healthcare database integration among different countries and different health systems. The EIP-AHA represents an opportunity to compare practices, identify common needs and establish good practices and harmonized approaches with a view to maximize the effective exploitation of large data sets and provide the basis for studying population cohorts at European level.

This paper analyzed a limited number of databases, those available by the members of EIP-AHA Adherence Group. They represent a cluster of data from three different countries (Italy, Spain, Republic of Ireland). However, the methodology used can be easily expanded to other interested stakeholder for future data integration.”

As Professor Giorgio Colombo, Editor-in-Chief, explains “The availability of ‘big data’ has brought about a wave of innovation in projects when conducting health services research. Most of the available data sources are restricted to the geographical scope of a given country and present heterogeneous structure and content. This paper describes the methodology used to gather the information from available databases among the Adherence Action Group partners with the aim of improving data sharing on a European level.” 

ClinicoEconomics and Outcomes Research is an international, peer-reviewed open-access journal focusing on Health Technology Assessment, Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research in the areas of diagnosis, medical devices, and clinical, surgical and pharmacological intervention. The economic impact of health policy and health systems organization also constitute important areas of coverage.

Dove Medical Press Ltd is a privately held company specializing in the publication of Open Access peer-reviewed journals across the broad spectrum of science, technology and especially medicine.

Updated 14 June 2016