A united commitment to limiting the environmental impact of eHealth



Limiting the environmental impact of eHealth is now an essential sustainable development issue which the Ministry of Health has decided to address.

The Delegation's ethics unit worked with Syntec Numérique, FEIMA, Cigref, the Shift Project, the Institut du Numérique Responsable, DINUM, the VYV group, the Société Française de Santé Digitale, OVH, MiPih, France Assos Santé, and numerous experts from civil society to produce a report that provides the first sectoral breakdown of the environmental impact of digital technology and proposes three principles for action:

  1. An in-depth consideration of our needs and a fight against all forms of "useless digital practices". In the end, it is not so much the technology itself that must be questioned as its suboptimal use, which is sometimes excessive or even disproportionate in view of the benefits sought (evaluation of the cost/benefit ratio of eHealth services).
  2. The relevance of care (eco-care) to cut the environmental impact of tech, because it mechanically leads to a reduction in the use of digital services.
  3. Eco-designing eHealth services to meet users' needs, using minimal IT resources without lowering the quality of the service provided, in order to minimise their impact on the environment.

This report is fully consistent with the government's "Digital and the Environment" roadmap, published on 23 February 2021, and lists a set of tools and guides that can be used by industry players wishing to engage in environmentally responsible approaches.

In order to achieve the goal of reducing the environmental impact of eHealth, the Ministry of Health is calling on all players in the sector (organisations, unions, institutions, agencies, ARS, GRADeS, health care facilities, health professionals, manufacturers, publishers, etc.) to commit and take swift action to help advance eHealth in France by meeting the challenges of tomorrow.

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