Digital Health - Theme from the E-Journal of Cardiology Practice
The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the expanding role and potential uses of digital technologies and communication tools in providing healthcare. Increasingly, specialists are being called upon to use these tools for their patients; patients who are often, already using these new technologies (such as the Internet or portable telephones) to understand, measure themselves and make their health choices. This series begins by defining e-Health from “mobile health (m-Health) to telehealth”, focussing on the role of cardiology which, as Prof. Martin Cowie, Chair of the ESC’s Digital Health Committee explains “stands at the forefront of such digital disruption”. With telemedicine representing one aspect of e-health, the use of “non-invasive and invasive home measuring devices” for patients with Heart Failure is explored, where these devices are used to “transfer vital parameters from the patient's home to a caregiver to make a (tele-) diagnosis”. Portable ECG devices are discussed as well. Finally, the ethics of e-Health are examined: the issues involved in employing digital health tools; the question of transparency of the gathered data; the challenge of “ease of use” of an e-Health system which implies a level of “digital and health literacy” not always available within each community or country.