Date: 11th and 12th December
Location: Finlandia Hall (Room 7), Mannerheimintie 13e, 00100 Helsinki, Finland

Digital Health Society Summit will provide a unique opportunity to participate, network and collaborate for anyone interested in digital health. The Summit is designed to be an open two-day forum for the many European initiatives and projects on the data-driven transformation of health and social care to converge and build collaboration bridges.

The Summit is under the patronage of the Finnish Presidency of the Council of the European Union and is supported by ECHAlliance.


11th December 2019

8:00 – 9:00 Registration & Coffee


9:00 – 9:10 Welcome & Introduction

  • Brian O’Connor, Chair at ECHAlliance
  • Tapani Piha, Special Adviser to the Finnish EU Presidency, Former Head of Unit at the European Commission


9:10 – 9:15 Welcome from the Ministry of Social Affairs &Health


9:15 – 9:35 The Finnish Presidency of the Council of the European Union

Conclusions of the Finnish Presidency
Veli-Mikko Niemi, Director-General, International Affairs, Ministry of Social Affairs and Health


9:35 – 10:15 The Finnish Digital Health Story

  • A summary and timeline of the development of Digital Health in Finland
  • Overview of Finland’s future plans and legislation for Digital Health


10:15 – 11:45 Why are we not making better use of real-world data for learning?

This panel discussion should explore the full spectrum of opportunity. Data collected in real life settings (‘real-world data’) can create opportunities across the healthcare pathway: from wellness and disease prevention to accelerated treatment discovery and enhanced clinical research, better and faster diagnoses and access to personalised treatments for patients.. In spite of the increasing wealth of data sources available, and interest from healthcare systems to leverage real world data in decision-making, significant challenges remain that are preventing us from reaping its benefits. During the discussion we will explore the potential for real world data to drive more innovative and sustainable patient care in Europe, as well as the key barriers impeding its use and uptake.


  • Primary and Secondary Use of Data
  • AI & algorithms
  • Data access and interoperability
  • Data sources and quality
  • Trust and acceptability

Moderator: Dipak Kalra, President at European Institute for Innovation through Health Data ( I~HD)

Rachel Dunscombe , CEO at NHS Digital Academy & Director at Digital Health Society
Hannu Hamalainen, Senior Advisor at Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra
Mathias Ekman, Director Industry Solutions for Healthcare at Microsoft Western Europe
Enkeleida Nikaï, Head of Real World Evidence, Senior Director at Janssen Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA)
Angela Ibald-Mulli, Head, Medical Evidence Generation Primary Care at Sanofi
Catherine E Chronaki, Secretary General at HL7 Foundation Europe and VP at European Federation for Medical Informatics (EFMI)


11:45 – 13:00 Lunch & Networking


13:00 – 14:30 How do we capture and respect citizens’ preferences on data governance? Challenges and opportunities in building trust

This panel is jointly promoted by Digital Health Society Task Force 2 & Digital Health Europe (DHE) and is the first step towards establishing a European Digital Forum of relevant (private and public) organizations that have developed citizen-controlled data governance and digital empowerment tools and can contribute with their input to the design of the final recommendations of DHE. We will investigate different models and approaches to reflect on how we engage with the public and transparently demonstrate that we can respect their wishes, either by consensus or as individuals. If health data is the fuel that can drive the transformation of healthcare systems to improve the population’s health and wellbeing, what are the reasonably justifiable limitations to its use? If there is an ethical imperative to use health data, what should be the framework that governs it in Europe? What will be the role of the future European Health Data Space? This discussion will take a deep dive into a widely held stumbling block to scaling digital health: how we build better trust and understanding in the use of health data to unlock its societal benefits, and the role that EU policy can play.


  • Citizen controlled data governance innovative models (e.g. data cooperatives)
  • Data donation
  • The Finnish approach
  • Consent, Transparency & Trust
  • Ethics
  • Governance (multi-stakeholder perspective)

Moderator: Bleddyn Rees, Deputy Chair at ECHAlliance
Maritta Perälä-Heape, Director, Centre for Health and Technology at Faculty of Medicine, University of Oulu
Valentina Tageo, International Projects Director at ECHAlliance
Nicola Bedlington, Special Advisor at European Patients Forum
Jaana Sinipuro, Project Director at IHAN SITRA
Angela Li, Commercial + Marketing Excellence & Strategy Lead at Johnson & Johnson
Henrique Martins, President of Conselho de Administração at SPMS – Serviços Partilhados do Ministério da Saúde, EPE


14:30 – 15:00 Industry Keynote

15:00 – 15:30 Coffee & Networking


15:30 – 17:15 Health Data & Policy Initiatives across Europe: Who, What, Why & When?

Moderator: Joan Cornet, Director at Digital Health Observatory and Coalition of the Willing at ECHAlliance

  • EU Health Coalition, Roberta Savli, Senior Manager in the Healthcare Systems department at EFPIA
  • Digital Health Europe, Veli Stroetmann, Head of eHealth Research and Policy at empirica GmbH
  • The Digital Health Society, Bleddyn Rees, Director at the Digital Health Society
  • Data Saves Lives, Nicola Bedlington, Special Advisor at European Patients Forum
  • European Regional and Local Health Authorities (EUREGHA), Fliss Bennée, Deputy Director, Technology and Digital at Llywodraeth Cymru – Welsh Government
  • Innovative Medicines Initiative, Magda Chlebus, Executive Director Science Policy & Regulatory Affairs at EFPIA
  • “So what?” panel discussion


17:15 – 17:30 Conclusion to Day 1
Bleddyn Rees, Deputy Chair at ECHAlliance


12th December 2019

8:30 – 8:45 Welcome and key messages from Day 1
Brian O’Connor, Chair at ECHAlliance


8:45 – 9:00 All Policies for a Healthy Europe
Mary Harkin, Chair at All Policies for Healthy Europe


9:00 – 10:30 Digital Health Society Task Force 4: success stories of digital transformation

Moderator: Joan Cornet, Director at Digital Health Observatory and Coalition of the Willing at ECHAlliance

  • Learning from the Cross Border Collaboration between Finland and Estonia, Pritt Tohver, Advisor for digital services innovation and development at Ministry of Social Affairs Estonia
  • Ambiguous advice, questionable quality: Determining, evaluating and distributing high quality Health Apps, Liz Ashall Payne, Founder CEO at ORCHA
  • Next generation EHR systems based on vendor-neutral data persistence, Tomaz Gornik, CEO at Better
  • A digital circle of care: frailty, Chaloner Chute, Chief Technology officer at Digital Health & Care Institute Scotland
  • Digital Solutions to diagnose and monitor neuromotor impairments, Prof Mark Van Gils, Research Professor at VTT and Rutger Zietsma, Chief Executive Officer at Manus Neurodynamica
  • An ecosystem of wellness apps on top of Finnish Kanta PHR by Mikael Rinnetmäki, Founder at Sensotrend Oy


10:30 – 11:00 Coffee break & Networking


11:00 – 12:30 ECHAlliance International Gathering of Ecosystems – Including Launch of the ECHAlliance Finnish Network


11:00 – 11:07 Opening of the ECHAlliance Ecosystem Gathering /Background and Progress with Finnish Ecosystem Network
Andy Bleaden, Director Ecosystems and Membership at ECHAlliance


11:07 – 11:10 Message from Sinikka Salo, Leader of Change, Ministry of Social Affairs and Health at Finnish Government


11:10 – 11:20 OuluHealth: our ecosystem experience
Maritta Perälä-Heape, Director, Centre for Health and Technology at Faculty of Medicine, University of Oulu


11:25 – 11:45 Our new Ecosystems: our key priorities

  • KeHO – Central Finland Health and Wellbeing Ecosystem
  • Kuopio Health Cooperative, Aki Gröhn, Chief Executive Officer at Kuopio Health
  • South Ostrobothnia Ecosystem, Sami Perälä, Developing Manager, Well Being Technology at Seinäjoki and Sanna Inkeri, Project Manager at Regional Council
  • Vaasa Welfare Technology Ecosystem, Tony Pellfolk, Head of Development at Vaasa Medical District


11:50- 12:20 – Welcome to the wider ECHAlliance Network
Introduction by Andy Bleaden, Director Ecosystems and Membership at ECHAlliance

Recent Ecosystem launches:

  • Transylvanian Ecosystem Romania by Ion Gheorge Petrovai, Co-Founder at Fresh Blood
  • South West England SWITCH Ecosystem by Arunangsu Chatterjee, Associate Professor of Digital Health & Education at University of Plymouth

Collaborating together

  • Learning Expeditions by Gisela Garcia-Alvarez, Managing Director at Cluster Saúde (Galicia Ecosystem – Spain)
  • Multi Ecosystems – Digital Health Ecosystem Wales by Paul Howells, NHS Wales and Catrin Rees, Programme Executive at Life Sciences Hub Wales

Collaboration across many borders

  • Scottish Ecosystem by Sanna Rimpiläinen, Research and Skills Manager at Digital Health & Care Institute


12:25 – 12:45  Connecting up with existing Finnish Health Ecosystems

Where are we – What’s next? by Marjaana Komi, VTT

Accelerating internationalization:

  • Health Innovation Village at GE by Mikko Kauppinen, Village chief and René Coffeng, Engineering Manager for Mobile Digital Health at General Electric
  • Cognitive Healthcare Innovation Cluster by Miikka KiiskiBusiness Development Executive at IBM Finland


12:50 Formal Welcome,  Signing Ceremony of the ECHAlliance Finnish Network and Official Picture


12:55 – 13:15 Closing remarks

Brian O’Connor, Chair at ECHAlliance


13:15 – 14:15 Lunch and networking



Photo: Cecil, Finlandia Hall, Winter 2013 – 02. 2013. CC BY-SA 3.0.,_Winter_2013_-_02.JPG