The demographics of the western world is changing: people are getting older and as a partial consequence get an increasing number of chronic diseases such as diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and coronary disease. At the same time, healthcare systems are stressed for resources, health centers are getting larger and more distributed, and the number of healthcare professionals does not follow the trend in chronic diseases. All of this leads to a need for telemedical and mobile health applications. In a Danish context, these applications are often developed through local (innovative) initiatives with little regards for national and global (standardization) initiatives. A reason for this discrepancy is that the software architecture for national (and global) systems and standards are hard to understand, hard to develop systems based on, and hard to deploy. To counter this, we propose a software ecosystem approach for telemedicine applications, providing a framework, Net4Care, encapsulating national/global design decisions with respect to standardization while allowing for local innovation. This paper presents an analysis of existing systems, of requirements for a software ecosystem for telemedicine, and a summary of initial design decisions for the Net4Care framework.
2012 Joint Working Ieee/ifip Conference on Software Architecture (wicsa) and European Conference on Software Architecture (ecsa), 2012, p. 224-228