The pHealth 2013 Conference is the 10th in a series of scientific events bringing together expertise from medical, technological, political, administrative, and social domains related to the provision of personalized health services. Aspects such as health games, terminologies and ontologies, medical decision support, the monitoring of environmental and living conditions of citizens, as well as social and ethical issues, are addressed by almost 40 speakers from various parts of the world. Keynotes, invited talks, and oral presentations discuss foundations and principles as well as requirements and solutions for pHealth. European success stories and national pilots, as well as innovations and industrial products enabling the paradigm shift towards personalized health, form the scientific program, together with demonstrations of existing and emerging applications in the pHealth domain. Presentations will be complemented by panels, workshops dedicated to specific challenges, and updates on road-mapping activities focusing on the year 2020.
In recent years, the pHealth conferences have emerged as the leading international conference series on wearable micro and nano technologies for personalized medicine and personalized health service provision. Since 2003, pHealth has become increasingly recognized for attracting acknowledged scientists and experts in the domains of relevant technologies: medical doctors, policy makers from academic institutions, hospital administrations, governmental and regulatory bodies, the healthcare industry and allied professions. Bringing together the experience of a dynamically emerging professional community from Europe and beyond, the pHealth series of events has made visible the tremendous potential of micro and nano technologies, not only for the future of medicine, but also for the improvement of healthcare and welfare processes today and tomorrow, thereby helping to integrate health and social care.
Microsystems, smart textiles, telemedicine, mobile computing, smart implants, sensor-controlled medical devices, and innovative sensor and actuator principles and techniques as well as related body, local and wide area networks – up to Cloud services – have become important enablers not only for monitoring, diagnosis, and treatment in both inpatient and outpatient care, but also for preventive and predictive medicine. This is, however, just the beginning of evolutionary and revolutionary changes, paradigm shifts, and the respective significant opportunities for patients, citizens, health professionals, healthcare establishments, and companies engaged in the micro and nano technologies. This will indeed be of interest to the entire healthcare industry. The multilateral benefits of the full gamut of enabling pHealth technologies will lead to a win-win situation with enormous potential for all the stakeholders involved, not only in terms of improved medical quality and industrial competitiveness, but also with increasing access to care coupled with manageable healthcare costs.
The pHealth 2013 Conference covers existing and emerging technologies, looks at the outcomes of successful European projects in various domains and addresses topics beyond the traditional scope of clinical, primary care and public health. Presentations range from latest developments, through running projects and initiatives, to lessons learned from keeping project results sustainable.
The pHealth 2013 Conference benefits gratefully from the experience of and the lessons learned by the organizing committees of previous pHealth events, particularly 2009 in Oslo, 2010 in Berlin, 2011 in Lyon, and 2012 in Porto. The 2009 conference introduced the interesting idea of having special sessions focusing on a particular topic organized by a mentor/moderator. The Berlin event in 2010 initiated workshops on particular topics prior to the official start of the conference. Lyon in 2011 saw the launch of so-called dynamic demonstrations, allowing the participants to demonstrate software and hardware solutions on the fly without the need for a booth. Implementing pre-conference events, pHealth 2012 in Porto gave attendees a platform for presenting and discussing recent developments and provocative ideas which helped to animate the sessions.
The pHealth 2013 Conference in Tallinn combines the presentation of emerging principles, future visions and views with a careful analysis of lessons learned from international and national R&D activities and practical solutions. A special focus is given to the newest paradigm changes and challenges coming up within Big Data, Analytics, Translational and Nano Medicine, etc. In this context, the three Working Groups – “Electronic Health Records (EHR)”, “Personal Portable Devices (PPD)” and “Security, Safety and Ethics (SSE)” – of the European Federation for Medical Informatics (EFMI), all actively involved in the preparation and realization of pHealth 2013, have organized a pre-conference workshop dedicated to “Reuse and Secondary Use of Health Data – Interoperability, Privacy and Security Challenges”. Another pre-conference panel session addresses “Gamification and Health”.
This proceedings volume covers keynotes and invited speeches as well as oral presentations selected from submissions to the pHealth 2013 conference. All submissions have been carefully and critically reviewed. The editors are indebted to the expertise of the reviewers, which has undoubtedly contributed greatly to the quality of the conference and the book at hand.
Neither the pHealth 2013 Conference nor the publication of the pHealth 2013 proceedings by IOS Press would have been possible without the support of the sponsors: Estonian Health Tech Cluster and its partner organizationsmost notably ELIKO Competence Center for Electronics and ICT, and European Federation for Medical Informatics (EFMI). Supporters who have contributed their time and effort to the success of the conference also include Fraunhofer Institute for Digital Media Technologies IDMT – Germany and ITS Norway.
The editors are also grateful for the dedicated efforts of the Local Organizing Committee, chaired by Liisa Parv, whose members and helpers have ensured the smooth operation of the conference. They would especially like to thank Indrek Ruiso, Mike Tiffin, Riin Ehin, and Tõnis Allik from Estonian HealthTech Cluster and its Board for their continuous involvement in the preparation and realization of the conference.
Bernd Blobel, Peter Pharow and Liisa Parv