WHO Digital Health and Innovation team

WHO Digital Health and Innovation team

Digital technologies are now integral to daily life, and the world’s population has never been more interconnected. Innovation, particularly in the digital health sphere, is also happening on an unprecedented scale. Despite this, the potential of digital technologies and innovation to improve the health of populations remains largely untapped. With a coordinated approach to health products and systems innovation, there is an immense opportunity to expand their use, especially in low- and middle-income countries.

Countries are currently responding to their most pressing health demands through new technologies and innovations in health that can either strengthen or disrupt many aspects of healthcare services and systems.

A lack of appropriate governance and safeguards can result in a number of risks associated with privacy, security, and safety, as well as inequities arising from disjointed investments by countries in digital health and new innovations.

The mandate of WHO is to advise countries on how to maximize the opportunities of digital technologies and innovations, while avoiding the pitfalls and managing risks

The Digital Health and Innovation department is committed to seeking out, investigating, and promoting the best health-related digital technologies and other innovations to help all people attain the highest level of health possible, as part of the achievement of the WHO’s Thirteenth General Program of Work (GPW13) Triple Billion goals and Sustainable Development Goal 3 (SDG3).

Through the work of the Digital Health and Innovation department, ministries of health and other stakeholders will have evidence-based guidance as well as packages of tested tools and access to capacity-building to be able to plan, invest in, design, and benefit from open, standards-based digital tools and innovative solutions. This is designed to strengthen countries’ potential to measure and achieve affordable and effective health care for all.

WHO has three key objectives to promote the adoption and scale-up of digital health and innovation:

  1. Translating  latest data, research, and evidence into action: this means promoting standards for interoperability and data sharing and supporting implementation of innovative digital solutions that contribute to informed decision making.
  2. Reinforcing knowledge generation through guidance and scientific communities of practice: ensuring planning and decisions into digital and innovation investments are evidence driven and informed by collective learning. Strengthening capacity, and brings together expertise on topics of effective ways of leveraging digital tools and systems to strengthen clinical and public health systems.
  3. Linking countries health demands with ready-to-scale digital health solutions innovations with a proven impact: WHO takes a proactive, systematic approach to identify, prequalify, matchmake and scale digital health solutions and innovations that are based on countries health needs. This matching of supply to demand, while advising on best practices, help to ensure that digital health technologies and health innovations are effective, appropriate, and accessible to all.  


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Digital Health
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