EU Health data centre and a common data strategy for public health

Study 21-09-2021

Regarding health data, its availability and comparability, the Covid-19 pandemic revealed that the EU has no clear health data architecture. The lack of harmonisation in these practices and the absence of an EU-level centre for data analysis and use to support a better response to public health crises is the focus of this study. Through extensive desk review, interviews with key actors, and enquiry into experiences from outside the EU/EEA area, this study highlights that the EU must have the capacity to use data very effectively in order to make data-supported public health policy proposals and inform political decisions. The possible functions and characteristics of an EU health data centre are outlined. The centre can only fulfil its mandate if it has the power and competency to influence Member State public-health-relevant data ecosystems and institutionally link with their national level actors. The institutional structure, its possible activities and in particular its usage of advanced technologies such as AI are examined in detail.