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Home > All articles > Sweden is a Rich Source of Real-World Evidence (RWE) and Health Data – Together with Finland, it Offers a Population of 15 Million  

Sweden is a Rich Source of Real-World Evidence (RWE) and Health Data – Together with Finland, it Offers a Population of 15 Million  

Real-world data (RWD) created in Finnish healthcare is comprehensive and high-quality. Sweden, another Scandinavian country, also offers high-quality healthcare data for real-world evidence generation.  

-By combining the data from these two countries, we reach a population of over 15 million unique individuals, states Dr. Johanna Simin, Lead RWE Epidemiologist at Medaffcon, during the EMMA event organised by Medaffcon.  

In Sweden, a vast amount of healthcare data is available at the national and regional levels, covering a long period of time. Different data sources can be linked using the Swedish personal identification number.  

The information needed for real-world evidence (RWE) research is available in Sweden from several national and regional databases, researcher-led databases, about 450 registered biobanks, and over 100 disease-specific quality registries.  

-Research results based on solid real-world data (RWD) from Sweden or Finland can be generalised to other relatively similar populations and settings, such as Germany, states Dr. Johanna Simin, Lead RWE Epidemiologist at Medaffcon.  

VårdAnalysdataLager (VAL) Contains Real-time Real-World Data (RWD)  

The Stockholm-based VårdAnalysdataLager (VAL) data lake integrates data from the County of Stockholm. This data lake contains the real-time data needed for real-world evidence (RWE) generation reflecting the clinical praxis and covers nearly a quarter of Sweden’s population.   

VårdAnalysdataLager (VAL) data lake includes information from specialised and primary healthcare and private healthcare services. Linking VAL data to the regions’ hospitals allows tracking of patient treatment and prognosis, treatment costs, and variations in treatment outcomes across different hospitals.  

VårdAnalysdataLager (VAL) includes data from 3 000 healthcare providers, 2.5 million individuals, and 26 municipalities.  
-Data can be ordered at the patient or aggregate level, and linked with hospital data, says Stockholm-based Dr. Johanna Simin, Lead RWE Epidemiologist at Medaffcon.  

Real-world research data from VårdAnalysdataLager
(VAL) is acquired through the Stockholm Center for Health Data. Center for Health Data coordinates data acquisition between data owners and data users.  The Center also verifies the ethical approval of studies, scientific credibility, and data security.  

Medaffcon´s Real-World Data (RWD) Project Investigates Lung Cancer

Medaffcon is running a lung cancer research project in Region Stockholm. It utilises data from the VårdAnalysdataLager (VAL) data lake.  

-This project provides an in-depth understanding of lung cancer patients, such as the number of patients, risk factors, including smoking status, pathology and histology information, treatments, outcomes, and health care utlization related costs, says Dr. Johanna Simin, Lead RWE Epidemiologist at Medaffcon.  

  •  Covers data from Stockholm County  
  • Gathers real-time data  
  • Uses encrypted data and patients can be tracked based on their Swedish personal identification number  
  • Covers approximately 20%–25% of Sweden’s population  
  • Covers urban, suburban, and rural areas  
  • Includes all publicly funded healthcare services, and private healthcare providers with agreements with national healthcare services  
  • Contains over 3000 healthcare providers 
  • Data can be linked to the hospitals within the region 

Medaffcon Oy provides research and expert services for the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. The EMMA-event organised by Medaffcon discussed developing pharmaceutical evaluation activities and utilising healthcare registry data and innovative new opportunities.
The EMMA event was held on April 10, 2024 in Emma museum in Finland. Johanna Simin, Medaffcon’s Lead RWE Epidemiologist, held the presentation on real-world research in the Stockholm area. 

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