Using internet GIS technology for early warning, response and controlling the quality of the public health sector

Int J Electron Healthc. 2004;1(1):78-102. doi: 10.1504/IJEH.2004.004661.


Recent EU and Greek Government legislation highlights the need for the modernisation of the public health management system and the improvement of the overall health of EU citizens. In addition, the effusion of epidemics even in developed countries makes the need for the enhancement of public health services imperative. In order to best confront the above-described challenges, the National Technical University of Athens, in cooperation with the Greek Ministry of Health and Welfare and the European Commission (EC), designed and developed an integrated public health information network, named GEPIMI (Integrated Geographical System for EPIdemiological and other Medical Information), in the framework of a three-year pilot project. This pilot project, funded by Greek Ministry of Health and Welfare and the EC supported the Programme INTERREG II to establish an advanced and integrated web-based information system that can process and move information in real time, allowing public health authorities to monitor events at hundreds or thousands of public health facilities at once. The system is established among hospitals, primary healthcare authorities and health agents in Greece, Bulgaria, Albania, Fyrom, and Turkey. The project aims at demonstrating the best practices, prospects, applications and high potential of Telematics Healthcare Networks in Europe, with a view to promoting cooperation and interconnection between European communities in the field of Telematics Healthcare Applications. The GEPIMI System, implemented via an innovative web based system, constitutes a replication of a highly effective mechanism. It incorporates state-of-the-art technologies such as Geographic Information Systems (G.I.S.), web based databases, GPS, and Smart Card Technology and supports a variety of health-related web applications including early warning and response of epidemics, remote management of medical records, seamless healthcare coverage, comprehensive statistical analysis of data, decision-making procedures, inter-communication between international scientific fora and other.

MeSH terms

  • Disease Outbreaks
  • Efficiency, Organizational*
  • Geographic Information Systems*
  • Greece
  • Humans
  • Information Systems / instrumentation
  • Information Systems / organization & administration*
  • Internet*
  • Medical Informatics / organization & administration
  • Public Health Administration*