Collaboration is the key – Big Data 4 Health, Ghent, 23rd September 2021


On 23 September, LynxCare organised a virtual symposium: “Big Data 4 Health”. It brought together hospital and life science management, top policy makers and health tech entrepreneurs from across Benelux to discuss the opportunities of real-world data and research in healthcare.

Collaboration is the key was undoubtedly the red thread running through all the presentations and discussions. This message was further reinforced by Nigel Hughes, Scientific Director at Janssen and EHDEN Project Lead, who gave a presentation on the importance of a standard health data model (OMOP) to collaborate across the EU.

“Making better use of existing technologies, employing a common data model, and uniting key stakeholders via federated, public-private networks are creating tremendous value. This point was made clear throughout the Symposium and is at the foundation of EHDEN,” noted Nigel Hughes. “This general approach and activities such as large-scale network studies, methodological innovation such as study-a-thons are significantly speeding up our ability to share data and generate real world evidence, especially during a pandemic, where time is of the essence,” he added.

The event wrapped up with a lively group discussion that addressed the significance of sharing standardised data and how hospitals, government and the pharma industry can work together to improve the quality of care. How COVID-19 changed the way data is managed and value-based healthcare were also topics that this group shared their experiences on.

Ensuring optimal funding and targeted resourcing, with aligned priorities between care providers up to policymakers were critical points. Working with data alone is insufficient of course to meet large scale priorities in national health systems. Belgium was viewed as particularly well positioned with the incorporation of electronic health record systems, but there needs to be a greater emphasis now on interoperability and harmonisation.

You can view a recording of the whole event by clicking on this link.