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The second of two Dutch reports was published in December 2021. NICTIZ pursues its commitment to better health through better information by exploring what it can learn from others.

The importance of a joint approach

In April 2021, NICTIZ – the Dutch competence centre for electronic exchange of health and care information – published an interesting report. Its topic: the need for a joint approach to information exchange in Europe. This first of two reports highlights two core recommendations: first, Europe needs a joint approach to information exchange; and second, the European Union provides a perfect breeding ground for innovation on eHealth and interoperability. Throughout this first report, the message is repeated that standardisation is key.

The report is already available in English here.

Learning from other countries

On 22 December 2021, NICTIZ published a new 40+ page report. The Dutch competence centre is keen to understand what it can learn from other countries. As a result, it conducted a study to find out what is happening elsewhere. The report focuses on information exchange approaches used in the USA and in three other European countries – Austria, Finland, and Germany.

It is clearly important to keep a keen eye on what can be learned from others. Competence centres throughout Europe working on information exchange in the health and care fields will find this an insightful report into what one country can learn from a selection of other countries.

Key learning points

For the Netherlands, several key learning points have emerged from NICTIZ’s 2021 study. These points focus on the importance of:

- legislation (together with its pre-conditions).

- policy on population health.

- central strategies, priority-setting, and choices.

- financial resources.

- a modular approach to re-usable building blocks.

- functionalities based on standardised and centrally specified interfaces.

- community facilities, directories, and generic services.

- IHE profiles, HL7, and FHIR (these are various international standards).

NICTIZ reaches the conclusion that a solution that is based on international standards offers plenty of opportunities for collaboration, in the Netherlands too.


Currently available in Dutch only, the report offers some interesting sources of literature in the English language from the four countries studied in annex 3 (p43).

For more information, visit their website.



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