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TM-Alliance presents the problems of the lack of interoperability at the second European HEALTHGRID Conference
24 March 2004
Held in Clermont-Ferrand, France, on the 29th 30th January 2004, the HEALTHGRID 2004 conference aims to reinforce and promote awareness of the possibilities and advantages linked to the deployment of GRID technologies in health. TM-Alliance has stated: “There is a risk that existing important results of the international and European standardization efforts in this area are not taken up simply because they are not always known, either to the industry or to the end-users’ community. Telemedicine-Alliance, with the cooperation of ESA-WHO-ITU and the EC, can provide the adequate missing link in the user-requirement definition, consensus and dissemination of interoperable Healthgrid solutions”.
What is HEALTHGRID? A GRID for Health
A grid for health is a collaboration of companies and laboratories agreeing to deploy biomedical services on a grid made of mutualized storage and computing resources.
The services can be open source or proprietary. Computing and storage are also free or can be charged. The middleware infrastructure is shared by the participating entities.
The health grid works as a backbone where biomedical projects can be deployed and benefit of the services and resources made available on the grid.
Interoperability and HealthGRID
There are currently various demo-projects whose approach is mainly to prove the capability that GRID technology offers in some health research sectors. But in order to achieve the optimal outcome and maximize the return of investments in GRID solutions, interoperability and open architecture have to be introduced at this early stage of the technology.
Interoperability in eHealth is not restricted to technical or medical questions. The pyramid of interoperability should be achieved from standards in communication, storage and processing to the policy initiatives, including medical and organisational protocols, financing procedures, and legal framework.
As a conclusion we could say that it is now, in the design and development phase of GRID technology in Health, the right moment to act with the aim of achieving an interoperable and open framework. The Health area should not only benefit from the initiatives started at the Global Grid Forum (GGF) in terms of global architecture and services definitions, but also from the security and other web services applications developed under the Internet umbrella.
More information2nd European HEALTHGRID Conference