Small Municipalities Risk Being Left Behind in the Digital Makeover of Healthcare

At Health Tech Hub Copenhagen, we are overall enthusiastic about the Danish Health Structure Commission's recommendations for digital transformation of our healthcare system. A joint national strategy and decision-making authority are particularly important. These are crucial steps if we are to ensure cohesive citizen and patient pathways and reduce the pressure on our healthcare personnel, aligning with our mission at HTHC.

There are some important perspectives that need to be considered in the political debate of the recommendations, as highlighted in this article featuring Jannik Zeuthen, Head of Policy & Partnerships at HTHC: "Small Municipalities Risk Being Left Behind in the Digital Makeover of Healthcare." (available in Danish behind a paywall)

Some key points:

  • Digitalisation and data create value out among citizens and healthcare personnel, not in large IT organizations. When digitalisation and data become an independent cross-cutting recommendation, there is a risk that we will not create the structural changes needed for digitalisation in the foundational structure of the healthcare system – for example, telemedicine centres and mandatory technology partnerships between municipalities. This could mean that particularly small municipalities and hospitals do not receive the help they need for digitalisation.
  • We need to find the golden middle ground between centralisation and decentralisation. If we establish one large organization for IT infrastructure, it should be in a corporate structure with common leadership that ensures a unified direction, but with decentralised and independent organisations underneath. Otherwise, we will create a colossus with feet of clay.


What are your thoughts?

We are currently preparing a consultation response, based on our own extensive analysis of barriers, solutions, and recommendations for digitalization and data: Better Digital Health (LINK), and many good debates since. If you have relevant input to add, please write to us, and we might include it in our response.