Recommender systems in the healthcare domain: state-of-the-art and research issues

Thi Ngoc Trang Tran*, Alexander Felfernig, Christoph Trattner, Andreas Holzinger

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nowadays, a vast amount of clinical data scattered across different sites on the Internet hinders users from finding helpful information for their well-being improvement. Besides, the overload of medical information (e.g., on drugs, medical tests, and treatment suggestions) have brought many difficulties to medical professionals in making patient-oriented decisions. These issues raise the need to apply recommender systems in the healthcare domain to help both, end-users and medical professionals, make more efficient and accurate health-related decisions. In this article, we provide a systematic overview of existing research on healthcare recommender systems. Different from existing related overview papers, our article provides insights into recommendation scenarios and recommendation approaches. Examples thereof are food recommendation, drug recommendation, health status prediction, healthcare service recommendation, and healthcare professional recommendation. Additionally, we develop working examples to give a deep understanding of recommendation algorithms. Finally, we discuss challenges concerning the development of healthcare recommender systems in the future.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-31
Number of pages32
JournalJournal of Intelligent Information Systems
Early online date17 Dec 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 17 Dec 2020


  • Health recommender systems
  • Food recommendation
  • Drug recommendation
  • Health status prediction
  • Healthcare service recommendation
  • Healthcare professionals recommendation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Information Systems
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Networks and Communications

Fields of Expertise

  • Information, Communication & Computing

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