Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise - Europe (IHE-Europe)

At a Glance
  • Status: Active Consortium
  • Year Launched: 1997
  • Initiating Organization: IHE-Europe
  • Initiator Type: Third-party organization
  • No disease focus
  • Location: Europe


Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) is a global nonprofit initiative with regional/national branches. It provides a pragmatic methodology ensuring interoperability between healthcare information technology (IT) systems, which are in conformance with IHE specifications. Its goal is the development of technical specifications for interoperability of healthcare IT solutions. IHE is a joint initiative of users and providers of healthcare IT systems. IHE is governed by an international board that provides strategic direction and coordinates the technical development activities of IHE.


IHE-Europe engages clinicians, health authorities, industry, and users to improve healthcare interoperability by helping national and European stakeholders and policymakers in adopting, promoting, and implementing IHE specifications and developing tools and services in support of interoperability testing.

IHE-Europe develops workflow descriptions and associated integration and content profiles in specific healthcare domains based on user requirements as well as the testing software (Gazelle tools) required to support vendors in developing interoperability.

IHE-Europe organizes live interoperability testing between vendors at the annual European Connectathon, as well as follow-on live interoperability demonstrations. IHE-Europe has a permanent technical team that contributes to developing testing software (Gazelle tools) and provides an independent oversight body to publish the participating vendors Connectathon results.

IHE-Europe’s core activities also include education and promotional activities, such as publishing interoperability success stories to create awareness and encourage utilization of IHE integration profiles.

Serving as a voice for European interests, IHE-Europe coordinates IHE development worldwide with IHE initiatives for North America, Asia, and Oceana in the international IHE organizational structure as well as close collaboration with standards development organizations (e.g., ISO, HL7, CEN, DICOM) and other profiling organizations such as the Continua Health Alliance that leverages IHE profiles.

Finally, IHE-Europe offers a unique suite of tools and services to hospitals, regional and national eHealth networks, as well as vendors through its dedicated operational branch IHE-Services.

Structure & Governance

To fulfill its tasks and purposes IHE-Europe uses the following organizational structure: Executive Committee, IHE-Services Committee, IHE-Services general manager, IHE-Europe technical manager, General Assembly, Steering Committee, MarCom Committee, director interoperability, Development Committee, and Secretariat.

Patient Engagement

The seamless flow of health information between the different healthcare systems across Europe brings tremendous benefits to patients, as well as to doctors and nurses providing vital care. IHE-Europe is dedicated to interoperability in health IT. It begins with an open process of developing integration profiles to assure IT systems can talk to each other. Then it requires testing these systems to verify that complex computer coding delivers the data. Finally, IHE-Europe actively promotes wider awareness and use of these methods for assuring continued conformance and compatibility. IHE integration and content profiles have been adopted by national and regional projects in countries such as Austria, France, Italy, Switzerland, Slovenia, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands and is considered by several others. These specifications provide the guidance necessary to implement specific standards and profiles in commercial and self-developed systems that will help realize efforts toward large-scale interoperability of health information in Europe.



Points of Contact

IHE-Europe Secretariat
Ulrike Mayerhofer-Sebera
IHE-Europe Coordinator
c/o ECR GmbH
Neutorgasse 9
1010 Vienna, Austria
phone: +43-1-533-4064-530
fax: +43-1-535-70-41

Sponsors & Partners

Agfa Healthcare



Entscheiderfabrik (GUIG)


European Association of Hospital Managers (EAHM)

European Association of Hospital Pharmacists (EAHP)

European Coordination Committee of the Radiological, Electromedical, and Healthcare IT Industry (COCIR)

European Society of Radiology (ESR)

European Society of Radiology (ESR)


GE Healthcare



National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Control (INIRA)

Philips Healthcare


Siemens Healthcare

Société Française de Radiologie (SFR)


Last Updated: 04/15/2016

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