Author Archive:Christina Schüttler

ByChristina Schüttler

Collaborative COVID-19 research across multiple universities thanks to the MII infrastructure

A study in regards of the death rate of COVID-19 patients initiated by researchers at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg and University Hospital Erlangen concluded that the COVID-19 mortality declined over the course of the pandemic. Specifically, an analysis across 14 university hospitals showed a decline in the average mortality from an initial 20.7 percent (January through April) to 12.7 percent (May through September). In addition, the dependence of mortality on various risk factors and in combination with various comorbidities was investigated. These factors included ventilatory status, gender, age, and length of stay in the ICU. The risk factors found, such as male sex, older age, and comorbidity pattern, support the results published in previous publications.

As with the previous publication focusing on the lockdown impact on hospital admissions, this study benefited from the efforts of the German medical informatics initiative (MII). The basis for the analysis was the MII infrastructure, which is currently being rolled out as part of the NUM (Netzwerk Universitätsmedizin) project CODEX (COVID-10 Data Exchange Platform) as the basis for a research data platform at the participating partner sites.

For the study, data from the data integration centers were analyzed in a federated approach, meaning that analysis methods were applied to distributed data. The data used for this purpose originated from the five basic modules of the MII core data set (person, demographics, case data, diagnoses, and procedures) and were provided in the standardized format of the §21 data set. After integrating the data into i2b2 research databases and applying local preprocessing, the aggregated analysis data was centrally collected, analyzed and visualized using R at Erlangen University Hospital.

The complete manuscript “Letalität von Patienten mit COVID-19: Untersuchungen zu Ursachen und Dynamik an deutschen Universitätsklinika” is now available online (in German)!

Further news about this publication can be found here:
Ärzte Zeitung
Deutsches Ärzteblatt

ByChristina Schüttler

Invitation to the MIRACUM Spring School 2021

A wonderful symbiosis of learning and practical experience awaits the participants of the MIRACUM Spring School, which will take place online from May 3rd to May 7th, 2021. Under the topic of “COVID-19 IT support”, themes for young professionals are prepared for their future tasks in patient care and research.

We cordially invite all junior staff of all consortia of the MII to attend the Spring School.

Further information and the registration form can be found on our website for the MIRACUM Spring School 2021.

ByChristina Schüttler

Job Offer: Professorship (W1) Biomedical Informatics

At the Erlangen site, the Medical Faculty of Friedrich-Alexander University (FAU) is seeking applicants to fill a W1 professorship in Biomedical Informatics at the Institute of Medical Informatics, Biometry and Epidemiology.

Applicants should have a bioinformatics background and experience in medical research data management (FAIR principles) to further develop aspects of data engineering and data integration in a medical context in independent research.

The central tasks will be to represent the research area appropriately and to participate in the research networks of FAU and the University Hospital Erlangen (e.g., Collaborative Research Centers, Research Training Groups, Interdisciplinary Center for Clinical Research, Excellence Cluster Medical Valley, Graduate School in Advanced Optical Technologies) and a collaboration with the Department of Artificial Intelligence in Biomedical Engineering (AIBE) at FAU, which is currently being established.

In addition, there will be a particularly close link with the MIRACUM project.

You can find more information about the job application here!

ByChristina Schüttler

Job Offer: Full Professorship (W3) Medical Informatics

The Department of Medicine at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University is planning to establish a Center for Medical Informatics together with the University Hospital Frankfurt. In this context, a new professorship for medical informatics is also to be appointed. This step is intended to strengthen medical informatics at the Frankfurt campus and to make a significant contribution to research and medical patient care with innovative medical informatics solutions.

In addition to representing the subject of medical informatics in research, teaching and patient care, the tasks associated with the professorship also include the scientific management of the Data Integration Center (DIC) of the University Hospital, which is currently being built up.

Find more information in the following job description!

ByChristina Schüttler

Job Offer: Full Professorship (W3) for Medical Data Science

The Faculty of Medicine at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) invites applications for a Full Professorship (W3) for Medical Data Science at the newly established Institute of Medical AI and High-tech Research.

We seek to appoint a leading expert with an internationally visible research and teaching profile. The successful candidate should have an international reputation in research into medical data science and experience in analysing routine clinical data. Research areas of the professorship should focus on syntactic and semantic interoperability, intelligent procedures for data integration and data harmonization, data warehousing and analytics.

The professorship, in addition to participating in the collaborative project “d.DiM: Digital Disease Management”, will be closely intertwined with the AI stakeholders in the digital health hub. Furthermore, there will be close cooperation with MIRACUM.

If you are interested, please submit your complete application documents online at by 05. March 2021. Please contact with any questions.

For more information, please visit: FAU Call for applications

ByChristina Schüttler

Job Offer: PR specialist (f/m/d)

In order to make the work in the MIRACUM consortium more visible to the public, the Central Office in Erlangen is looking for a support in the field of PR activities for the next possible date. The scope of duties includes editorial activities, but also communication with representatives from politics and society.

For more information and the job description, please follow this link.


ByChristina Schüttler

Lights, Camera, Action!

Extraordinary working days were scheduled at the Erlangen site of the MIRACUM consortium in October 2020. Within 3 days, the shooting for the MII Image Film was finished. For MIRACUM, the Use Case 2 was selected by the BMBF to present our consortium.

This use case deals with theShooting of the BMBF image film - Prof. Renz development and establishment of methods for the cross-location analysis of patient data using asthma and COPD as examples. Accordingly, the script emphasized these lung diseases and the potential of distributed data analysis to improve therapy strategies. In this context, Prof. Hans-Ulrich Prokosch (Erlangen) and Prof. Harald Renz (Marburg) name the problems of treatment and the extent to which artificial intelligence and machine learning can be used. Specific developed algorithms can contribute to the progress of precision medicine on the basis of previously collected data.

Besides MIRACUM, filming with the HiGHmed consortium has also been completed. Next year, the remaining scenes will be shot in Munich (DIFURTURE) and Leipzig (SMITH). The completion of the production of the film can be eagerly anticipated in the second half of 2021.

Shooting of the BMBM Image film - Prof. Prokosch

Photos: Anne Rosner

ByChristina Schüttler

“Biomedical Informatics and Data Science” at the Mannheim University of Applied Sciences

Online master’s program and certificate courses beginning in October – innovative, interactive, self-organized and family-friendly.

Qualified medical computer scientists are in great demand in all health care facilities and the medical industry. For this reason, the Mannheim University of Applied Sciences and the MIRACUM consortium offer an all new online master’s degree program “Biomedical Informatics and Data Science” starting in October 2020. The course is designed for graduates with a first university degree (Bachelor, Diploma) in Medical Informatics, Medical Documentation, Computer Science, Bioinformatics, Natural and Life Sciences or a completed state examination in Human, Veterinary and Dental Medicine.

The course of studies is divided into five focus areas: Medicine, Computer Science, Medical Computer Science, Biomedical Data Science and Management & Social Skills. Internationally recognized lecturers from the fields of patient care, research and teaching, instruct the latest methods, techniques and developments.

Providing flexibility between family life, current career, and furthering education, we offer 90 percent of the studies online and only 10 percent face-to-face. Due to low synchronous shares during the online phases, students can arrange their learning activities flexibly and freely.

The online-based self-study is carried out with the help of numerous small multimedia and interactive learning units, including lecture recordings, videos, eScripts, podcasts and self-learning controls. The active application and deepening of knowledge is promoted by continuous individual and collaborative work on learning and practice tasks as well as by the joint exchange in the learning group. The courses are not organized as classical lecturer- and input-oriented courses, rather they support in many ways an intensively supervised self-study learning process.

Regardless of the course of studies, the health care system requires constant further training for future demanding qualified jobs in information technology. This is especially true because of the rapid methodological and technological progress as well as the frequent lack of medical knowledge, which is necessary for the successful conception, development and introduction of typical medical applications. Without further training, one quickly loses the professional connection nowadays. For this reason, certified online continuing education courses in Medicine, Computer Science, Medical Informatics and Bioinformatics will also be offered from the Winter Semester 2020/21.

For additional information regarding the course of studies, further training offers and the application process visit our homepage

You can find the press release in German here.


Prof. Dr. Paul Schmücker

Phone: 04571/9783635


ByChristina Schüttler

University Medicine Greifswald starts digital registration of patient consent with the Broad Consent of the Medical Informatics Initiative (MII)

From now on, patients at University Medicine Greifswald will be asked during their admission interview whether their pseudonymized health data may be used for medical research. The consent, which is presented to the patients, is the nationwide standard text for consent (so-called “Broad Consent”) of the Medical Informatics Initiative (MII). The University Medicine Greifswald is partner in the MIRACUM consortium of the MII and one of the first locations of the MII using the Broad Consent in a pilot phase.

In the central in-patient admission of the University Medicine Greifswald, a TV team from the Norddeutscher Rundfunk (NDR) accompanied two patients during the comprehensive process with regards to information about the consent and MII research, consultation and digital consent registration. By giving their consent, both patients now actively support research with their “data donation”.

It was particularly important to those responsible to implement paperless processes from the very beginning. Thus, the consent of the patients is digitally documented using a standard tablet. For this purpose, a system integration of SAP with the software tools of the Independent Trusted Third Party at the University Medicine Greifswald has been implemented. All complex technical processes are hidden from the patients: they only recognize the text of the consent on the tablet, which they intuitively scroll through, “tick” and sign.

Preliminary technical work in the course of the German Centre for Cardiovascular Research (DZHK) has enabled a quick transfer of the solution into the clinical documentation system KAS+. In the future, this solution is also to be used in a slightly different setting with a different system integration in the DFG-funded project RADARplus in general practitioners’ practices in Lower Saxony.

To the NDR release in the ARD-Mediathek

ByChristina Schüttler

4CE Consortium – Results of Phase 1 published

First results of the 4CE Consortium were successfully published today in Nature Digital Medicine. The manuscript with the title “International Electronic Health Record-Derived COVID-19 Clinical Course Profile: The 4CE Consortium” covers the consortium’s data collection process and findings on EHR data from 96 hospitals in the US, France, Italy, Germany, and Singapore. These hospitals contributed data to the consortium for a total of 27,927 COVID-19 cases and 187,802 performed laboratory values. The provision of a central repository for medical records, which in addition to rapid data acquisition also allows data analysis and visualization, has provided fascinating, albeit preliminary, clinical evidence of how the disease presents, develops and affects different organ systems in different categories of COVID-19 patients.

In phase 1 of the project, the focus was initially on the following data:

  • Total number of COVID-19 patients
  • Number of intensive care unit admissions and discharges
  • Seven-day average of new cases per 100,000 people by country
  • Daily death toll
  • Demographic breakdown of patients
  • Laboratory tests to assess cardiac, immune and kidney and liver function, measure red and white blood cell counts, inflammatory markers such as C-reactive protein, as well as two proteins related to blood clotting (D-dimer) and cardiac muscle injury (troponin) 

In this phase, three locations of the MIRACUM consortium – Erlangen, Freiburg, Mannheim – have already been able to participate and provide data from their DIZ. They will also actively participate in the consortium in the next analysis phase that will also include more detailed clinical data from the patient´s ICU stay.

For further information please read the press release of the Havard Medical School.

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