The Digital Health Society: latest updates

The Digital Health Society: latest updates

Following the latest board meeting of the Digital Health Society (DHS) here below some important news to share on activities and progress over the past few months.

Appointment to the Board of Directors 

We are delighted to announce that Rachel Dunscombe will become a non-executive Director.

Rachel Dunscombe is the CEO of the NHS Digital Academy leading learning in Digital Health for the UK. She is also a visiting Professor at Imperial College Medical School as well as Global ARCH collaborative leader at KLAS research and strategic advisor for Salford Royal/NCA NHS Group. She serves on the UK government AI advisory committee and is Director of Digital – The Northern Care Alliance NHS Group. Rachel  is a strategic advisor to the Secretary of State for Health and is founding CHIME ambassador in the UK. She ranked #6 on CIO Magazine’s CIO 100 list in 2018 as well as Talent Unleashed’s most disruptive CIO in Europe 2016.

She joins Prof Angela Brandt of the University of Maastricht, Priit Tohver (Advisor for E-Services Innovation, Ministry Of Social Affairs In Estonia), Bleddyn Rees (Deputy Chair of the ECHAlliance) and Brian O’Connor (Chair, ECHAlliance).

Legal and organizational structure

DHS is a registered not for profit legal entity in the Republic of Ireland. The ECHAlliance ( who were instrumental in creating the Digital Health Society during the Estonian Presidency are providing support to ensure the smooth running of DHS.

The Operational Team of the DHS is based in Barcelona (Spain) and composed by Valentina Tageo, International Projects Lead at the ECHAlliance, and Federica Porcu, who is providing administrative assistance.

DHS position on the Brexit

Given the obvious uncertainty about the outcome, we have been asked by both our European and UK supporters, what will BREXIT change for the DHS.

The Board’s view is that the DHS will continue to extend a warm and collaborative welcome to our friends and colleagues in the United Kingdom irrespective the decisions on Brexit.

There is a desire within our community to maintain long established mutually beneficial relationships and to have the DHS act as an open bridge between the UK and Europe, as indeed it does with many countries globally.

Mission 100 million Digitally Connected Healthier Citizens

We continue to engage many stakeholders directly and there is a great deal of interest. We are participating in a number of parallel initiatives, which have similar objectives to the DHS, we operate in a collaborative fashion and engage with those when there is an opportunity to avoid reinventing the wheel and to break down silos.

For example, we are participating through the ECHAlliance in the recently launched European project DigitalHealthEurope, a new H2020 Coordination and Support Action (CSA).

The objective of the project is to provide comprehensive, centralised support to the digital transformation of health and care (DTHC) priorities of the Digital Single Market. The project will support large-scale deployment of digital solutions for person-centred integrated care by identifying, analysing, and facilitating the replication of highly impactful best practices.

Furthermore, following the EU Health Summit held in Brussels last November 2018, we have supported the preparation of the paper “A Shared Vision for the Future of Health in Europe. Paving the way in 2019 and beyond” which is available here. Such document distils recommendations for the next European Commission and European Parliament to bring the necessary changes about.

Task Force News  

The Dutch Ministry of Health & Sport (Leaders of the Task Force 1)  will host a DHS Online WORKSHOP next 17th April from 09:30 to 12:00 CET about Digital Maternity and Baby Care (more information and registration here).

More info on activities of the Task Forces will be published soon and uploaded onto the website.

How to join and support the DHS

The DHS is a multi-stakeholder Movement which depends on the active support from many, please accept our thanks for engaging.

We are redesigning the Task Force and making it easier for you to participate and join the one/s you feel more interested in.

Please if you wish to continue receiving DHS news and express your willingness to contribute to any of the Task Forces please fill in this short form.

Feel free at any time to visit the DHS website or email us on


Brian O’Connor



Follow us: @TheDHSociety

DHS’s webiste: 


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