On the occasion of the release of its annual report, The Pierre Fabre Foundation is publishing a series of interviews with the partners who support it in carrying out local actions.
The crisis has accelerated the pace of eHealth project development
What do we currently know about the potential of ICTs for improving access to healthcare in the Global South?
Digital tools have been introduced to improve health services in developing countries for two decades now, but because there have been so many initiatives, results inevitably vary widely. The challenge today is to learn from our successes and failures by applying a properly scientific approach to learning.
We can only help decisionmakers to make the right choices if we can agree on the basic requirements in terms of project longterm sustainability, public health benefits or the guaranteed digital sovereignty of nation states.
Has the global health crisis impacted this proliferation of initiatives?
The crisis has very significantly accelerated the development eHealth projects, just as it has for all digital tools.
At the same time, it has also revealed the risk of fragmentation and highlighted the need to unite all those involved around developing a common strategy
Is that then your aim in joining the Global South eHealth Observatory expert group?
Absolutely, because it is only by learning from each other that we will avoid repeating our mistakes. Working through the Observatory allows us to join up the efforts of e-health entities with complementary approaches, which could help us to formalise genuinely good practices in digital health.
Our ultimate goal is to promote and encourage innovation without losing our way among a confusion of low-impact initiatives. Which is why I am delighted to be involved in the work of the Observatory.