Dr. Mansukh Mandaviya, the Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare, gave a speech on Sunday at the G7 Ministerial Meeting on Health Innovation in Nagasaki, Japan.
The purpose of the discussion was to examine how to ensure universal health coverage by prioritizing, implementing, and using health technologies like digital health. The summit was attended by the health ministers of the G7 nations and the “Outreach 4” nations of India, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Thailand.
Addressing the G7 Ministerial Meeting Union Health Minister said, “Use of technology and Digital Health Tools are an enabler and equalizer which can facilitate strengthened health service delivery and aid in the achievement of Universal Health Coverage. The COVID-19 pandemic has catalyzed the use of technology in health service delivery and also highlighted the need to focus on an enabling framework to bridge the digital divide across the countries specifically amongst low-and-middle-income countries.”
The Union Health Minister also highlighted India’s accomplishments in digital health and stated, “India’s COVID-19 vaccine delivery platform, Co-WIN has monitored the administration of over 2.2 billion vaccine doses across the length and breadth of the country and monitored not only cold chain management but also facilitated citizens and vaccinators in administration of the vaccines besides providing a QR code based digital vaccine certificate”.
“Similarly, eSanjeevani, a National telemedicine platform, launched during the pandemic has already coordinated more than 115 million, free of cost, consultations to the citizens, making it the world’s biggest telemedicine platform”, he added in G7 Ministerial Meeting.
Big data, smart wearables, and AI can support clinical decision support systems: Health Minister in G7 Ministerial Meeting
Dr. Mandaviya pointed out the importance of embracing the benefits provided by new and evolving tools in the G7 Ministerial Meeting as well, emphasizing how big data analytics, smart wearables, and artificial intelligence can support clinical decision support systems, precision medicine, personalized healthcare, genomics, and clinical decision support systems, ensuring the right treatment is given to the right person at the right time.
He emphasized the significance of making sure that these technology tools are accessible, saying, “India has already taken a policy decision to provide all such digital tools free of cost to the world as Digital Public Goods.”
The foundation of the Global Initiative on Digital Health, based at the headquarters of the World Health Organisation, according to Dr. Mandaviya, has advocated the convergence mechanisms of all digital efforts around the world. Digital health has been made a specific focus during India’s G20 Presidency.
He emphasized the importance of the proposed network-of-networks concept in closing the digital divide globally and pleaded with the G7 nations to support it.