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Digital health leaders from around the world met in New Delhi for the Fourth Global Digital Health Partnership (GDHP) Summit on 25-26 February.
The GDHP, which has 24 country members, is a collaboration of governments and territories, government agencies and the World Health Organization, formed to support the effective implementation of digital health services. The summit was hosted by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) and attended by senior health officials from 34 countries, territories and the WHO.
The Honourable Shri Jagat Prakash Nadda, Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India said: ‘The GDHP occupies a unique place in global efforts to accelerate digital health. Digital technology supports affordable, high quality and accessible healthcare and delivery of the Sustainable Development Goals. The spirit of this important initiative is embodied in the Delhi Declaration.’
The Delhi Declaration is a statement which focuses on the high relevance of digital health to attain the sustainable development goals and to improve the health and well-being of member country citizens at national and sub-national levels through the best use of evidence-based digital technologies. The Declaration was agreed and published at the Summit:
During this summit, six new members of GDHP were accepted: Chile, Estonia, Japan, Poland, Portugal and the Netherlands.
Mr Erik Gerritsen, Secretary General of the Ministry of Health Welfare and Sport of the Netherlands, said: ‘We’re very happy and honoured to be accepted as a member by the participating countries of the GDHP. We are especially impressed by the progress made by the partnership which started only a year ago as a grass roots movement of governments, government agencies and the WHO.
‘We’re looking forward to making concrete next steps in the fields of interoperability and cyber security. These are key focus areas internationally that require global cooperation.’
Mr Tim Kelsey, Chair of the Global Digital Health Partnership and Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Digital Health Agency, presented five draft reports for each of the GDHP work plan’s key themes of interoperability, clinical and consumer engagement, evidence and evaluation, policy environments, and cyber security.
‘We are here because harnessing the power of the modern information revolution is vital to the quality and sustainability of health and care for us and for future generations,’ he said.
The summit was followed by the International Symposium on Digital Health, on Wednesday 27 February 2019, hosted by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India; World Health Organization and the George Institute for Global Health.
The New Delhi summit marks one year since the formation of the GDHP.