Global Digital Health Network April 2017 Meeting - Partnership & Collaboration

Dear Global Digital Health Network Members,

 

The 2017 Global Digital Health Forum will take place December 4-6 in the heart of Washington, DC.  The call for proposals will open on Friday, May 12.  Please check here for details here and stay tuned for more information about the call for proposals which will close on June 16.

 

Many thanks to our colleagues at World Vision for hosting the April 2017 Global Digital Health Network meeting exploring Multi-stakeholder Collaboration and Partnership.

 

We all know that successful collaborations can leverage resources and talent, transforming our global digital health programs. Our field is seeing more in the way of formal partnerships and collaborations, creating synergies and accelerating investments in harnessing digital solutions to improve health outcomes.  Our agenda included presentations by four leaders in the field: Alvin Marcelo, the Executive Director of the Asian eHealth Information Network;Magnus Conteh, Director of Global Health Programmes, Strategic Partnerships and Innovation at World Vision Ireland; Mohamed M. Jalloh, Deputy Director of Communications (eGovernment) for Sierra Leone); and Adele Waugaman, Senior Advisor, Digital Health, USAID Global Health Bureau, Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact.

 

Alvin Marcelo, Executive Director of AeHIN, kicked off the meeting providing an overview summary of the 5th AeHIN General Meeting themed "Achieving the SDG's with ICT" which took place March 6-10 in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar for more than 300 participants.AeHIN supports peer learning among national HIS and eHealth focal points and advocates in Ministries of Health, Ministries of ICT, academics and NGOs.  AeHIN, begun in 2011, comprises over 900 members from more than 25 countries in South and Southeast Asia and maintains affiliation with the Pacific Health Information Network (PHIN), Africa Network for Digital Health (ANDH), the Joint Learning Network (JLN) for Universal Health Coverage, and the regionalized community of practice focusing on Routine Health Information Systems (RHIS) — or the AeHIN RHIS sub-group. AeHIN focuses on four strategic areas: build capacity, enhance leadership, promote standards and interoperability, increase peer assistance and knowledge exchange through effective networking. In line with their capacity building, AeHIN has offered training programs through the AeHIN Academy online courses since May 2014, in addition to hosting an “AeHIN Hour” via GoToMeeting regularly in countries such as India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Thailand, and Bangladesh. Interested members may also benefit from their community of interoperable labs (co-labs) and their resource list, which may be found at AeHIN.HingX.org. Learn more about their interesting work here and join one of their upcoming webinars!

 

Next, we heard from Magnus Conteh, Director, Global Health Programmes, Strategic Partnerships and Innovation at World Vision Ireland who shared their process and lessons learned from a multi-stakeholder collaborative approach in Sierra Leone that is helping the government to create a shared course of action to rebuild its health information systems and the community health worker program post-Ebola. At the center of this work is a focus on leadership  - having the right leaders, the right solution, the right approach – with three objectives: 1) establishment of a collective programmatic approach; 2) positioning the approach as a mode and 3) setting the stage for government to finalize a 3-5 year national digital health implementation plan.  This multistage approach involves private public partnership investment, national health policy support and related human resources.

 

We were lucky to have Mohamed Jolloh, Deputy Director of Communications (eGovernment) from the Sierra Leone Ministry of Information and Communications join us for the morning to touch on policy vision and infrastructure investment. Through the ICT Infrastructure Master Plan, the Government has about 70% of the needed investment to complete national-level connectivity, with the goal to develop an ICT/Telecom Sector as a platform for economic prosperity across sectors. To support these goals, the government has a number of policies recently passed and pending, including a National Data Protection and Cyber Security Law, which is awaiting signature.

 

Last, we heard from USAID’s Senior Advisor for Digital Health Adele Waugaman, who presented on a number of partnerships, including:

  • The  Health Data Collaborative — a joint effort by 32 global health partners to work alongside countries to improve the availability, quality and use of data for local decision-making and tracking progress toward the health-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
  • The newly created Digital Health Initiative — a partnership between USAID, PATH and 40+ partners in the digital health community bringing together technology, NGOs, governments and regional networks around the world for global digital health advocacy and investment.
  • The HDC Digital Health and Interoperability Working Group who’s objective is to optimize the meaningful use and reuse of health information in LMICs to support achievement of the SDGs; to actively promote the development, use and long-term support of digital health “global public goods”; And to increase the alignment of country and partner investments for digital health.

 

The slides from the April meeting are attached and we encourage you to review them and to see more about the rich presentations from our presenters.

Our next monthly meeting will take place June 21st at the PATH offices in Washington, DC,and focus on “Data Use Partnership: lessons learned from three countries and how to institute a data use for decision making culture. We will include presentations featuring and a discussion around the importance of stakeholder engagement in order to create the foundation that is supportive of data use culture, highlighting Tanzania, Malawi and Ethiopia.