The famous examples of the sharing economy are, of course, Airbnb, Uber, BlaBlacar, Peerby etc. A less prominent example is Sync for Science. In Sync for Science patients share their medical data with clinical researchers. The idea is brilliant and simple: more patients in trials, more data points, less cost, less burden on the healthcare system. Just what is needed for research in precision medicine. No wonder the US Government launched Sync for Science to support its Precision Medicine Initiative.
Standardization is a key component of Sync for Science. The people involved in Sync for Science chose for the SMART on FHIR approach of open FHIR APIs. No new standards, stick to where the health IT market is heading, which means the FHIR data model, the REST protocol for data exchange and OAuth for security.This is the set of standards that participants in the Argonaut project adhere to (you know, Argonaut, the US initiative to accelerate interoperability using FHIR). The list of participants in Argonaut is as impressive as it is US oriented. Europe is lagging behind.
Luckily, Josh Mandel from Harvard Medical School, one of the driving forces of Sync for Science, will be in Amsterdam during the FHIR Developer Days 2016 (16-18 November). We asked him to elaborate on Sync for Science when he is here. We believe Sync for Science may well be a breakthrough project for FHIR and deserves to be followed in Europe.