Purpose and theory: The eDESDE-LTC project aims at developing an operational system for coding, mapping and comparing services for long-term care (LTC) across EU. The projects strategy is to improve EU listing and access to relevant sources of healthcare information via development of SEMANTIC INTER-OPERABILITY in eHEALTH (coding and listing of services for LTC); to increase access to relevant sources of information on LTC services, and to improve linkages between national and regional websites; to foster cooperation with international organizations (OECD).
Methods: This operational system will include a standard classification of main types of care for persons with LTC needs and an instrument for mapping and standard description of services. These instruments are based on previous classification systems for mental health services (ESMS), disabilities services (DESDE) and ageing services (DESDAE). A Delphi panel made by seven partners developed a DESDE-LTC beta version, which was translated into six languages. The feasibility of DESDE-LTC is tested in six countries using national focal groups. Then the final version will be developed by the Delphi panel, a webpage, training material and course will be carried out.
Results and conclusions: The eDESDE-LTC system will be piloted in two EU countries (Spain and Bulgaria). Evaluation will focus primarily on usability and impact analysis.
Discussion: The added value of this project is related to the right of “having access to high-quality healthcare when and where it is needed” by EU citizens. Due to semantic variability and service complexity, existing national listings of services do not provide an adequate framework for patient mobility.