Data protection

Insurance industry: EU plans on access to health data a missed opportunity


Insurance Europe has written to the EU’s Commissioner for Health and Food Safety expressing serious concerns about the proposed European Health Data Space (EHDS) which would exclude the insurance industry in accessing secondary health data. In the letter, the President of Insurance Europe, Andreas Brandstetter, argues that the exclusion of the industry contradicts the objective of the proposal: to use data to support the development of new innovative health services.

Insurance Europe welcomes the European Commission’s effort to establish an EHDS, which has the potential to support more effective healthcare delivery and the development of innovative treatment and services. However, the federation of insurance and reinsurance associations regrets the European Commission’s plans to exclude insurers from accessing the secondary use of health data without offering any detailed explanation.

Under the proposal, insurers would be unable to request access to secondary data for “modifying” insurance premiums. This would impede insurers’ ability to use newly available anonymised health data to offer more affordable rates, new innovative services, and cover risks that were previously uninsurable. Furthermore, it contradicts the European Commission’s Beating Cancer Plan which recognises the need that insurers’ risk-based assessment practices reflect the latest developments in cancer treatments and their improved effectiveness.