RESOLUTION SDC 111

FORUM: SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE

QUESTION OF: Measures to develop digital tools in health and education

SUBMITTED BY: Qatar

CO-SUBMITTERS:Botswana, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Guatemala, Indonesia, Jamaica, Kenya, Lao PDR, Lebanon, Liberia, Mexico, Namibia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Turkey, Ukraine, Viet nam.

STATUSPassed

THE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE,

Building on the 2005 World Health Organization (WHO) eHealth resolution,

Recognising that in the past 20 years, internet use has grown exponentially, counting approximately 3.9 billion users, 

Noting that during the Covid-19 pandemic, the use of digital tools and internet has increased by 70%,

Concerned that according to World Bank simulations, the Covid-19 pandemic will likely increase learning poverty in developing countries from 53% to 63%,

Aware of the needs imposed by the COVID-19 emergency and by the benefits which ensue from the spreading of remote health monitoring not only concerning epidemics but also for everyday use,

Observing the recent efforts of developed and developing countries on the subject of telemedicine,

Noticing the overwhelming benefits which would ensue from a generalization of eHealth to developing countries which could therefore profit from medical knowledge and support otherwise unreachable by their populations,  

Further reminding member states of the actions of Mexico in the digitization of their health system through the online platforms Prospera and the Mexican Institute of Social Security,

Emphasizing the benefits of digitizing medical care with regards to the increased efficiency and aid in the sharing of medical information and access to proximal medical care,

Further recalling the local funding the government of Mexico has provided to urban, infrastructural, and social housing development, 

Taking into consideration the impacts of funding by the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner for various global initiatives including but not limited to the United Nations Democracy Fund devoted to funding projects that will aid in the strengthening of democratic institutions and the promotion of human rights,

Bearing in mind the correlation between the development of healthcare and the development of a country’s economy, rendering their contributions to the global impact minimal and the aid of resources and funding through global initiative a necessity in keeping the public health buoyant,

  1. Calls upon all member nations to work with information telecommunication agencies or the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) to introduce or improve Information and Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructure and produce the necessary developments for online health services for example, through the creation of the United Nations Telecommunications Union (UNTU) to let every member nation benefit from a secured and global network in case of a telecommunication failure in their country;
  2. Suggests the creation of international and national resources that help to spread and accumulate knowledge surrounding health issues across the globe in ways such as but not limited to:
    1. digital tracking and monitoring systems, such as contact tracing apps. Such systems will track the rise of potentially dangerous health issues
    2. governments and citizens proactively communicating with each other using:
      1. Hotlines and chat boxes in order for citizens are able to speak to government officials
      2. Drones that are able to access rural areas which spread vital health information as well as first aid kits to those in need
      3. National interactive platforms on which medical, emergency and clinical services and in times of crisis, inform and send signals of needs such as blood donations, volunteering and such as;
  3. Endorses the integration of CE marking into health apps responsible for the testing of the reliability of health apps by means such as:
    1. requiring clinicians to go through thorough testing of a medical app prior to implementing its usage within their practice, testing for criteria outlined in the HIU checklist including but not limited to:
      1. the authenticity of the publisher of the app
      2. the relevance of the contained data
      3. the methods used to obtain data from the patients
    2. acknowledging the potential misinformation and the dangers that can occur by presenting false and misleading information via medical web platforms by creating an independent fact-checking organization to warn users in the case medical advice presented to them has not been verified by an accredited source
    3. creating user-friendly apps and websites that provide a wide range of medical information to all health care workers; that would:
      1. have interfaces similar to paper forms for easy integration
      2. easy messaging forms to send data and reports without the need for internet such as SMS;
  4. Recommends that member nations take part in developing the necessary technological advancements to facilitate eHealth, including but not limited to:
    1. the development of specialized medical software to help give the first interpretation of collected data
    2. ensuring ever lower power for ICT operations as well as the development of hardware to be embedded in said ICT for  analytical measurements 
    3. building local hubs which would serve as healthcare relays;
  5. Further recommends that healthcare professionals should be trained on the use of eHealth platforms in order to integrate eHealth into commonly known healthcare and improve the quality of the care provided through:
    1. implementation of training programmes incorporating 2 week time periods known as ‘familiarization periods’ which would involve:
      1. mandatory reading of pre-created manuals regarding Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) of the eHealth platform and further testing on the content of these manuals in order to ensure that professionals operate the platform smoothly
      2. ‘Practice Patients’ to be assessed by doctors in terms of the symptoms and the treatment to ensue, and how to make prescriptions using the platform
    2. a system which would involve providing a rating to doctors similar to other platforms such as Uber etc. and this would be helpful in ensuring that the doctors operating the eHealth platforms are of the highest standards, wherein:
      1. the rating would be given out of 5 stars
      2. patients who have been treated by doctors would provide them with ratings;
  6. Urges member nations to strengthen Worldwide Healthcare by introducing digitally based distance interaction between hospitals in order to, among other things, send data to be analyzed in case the area in which is was collected does not have the proper tools to produce a good analysis themselves, in an effort to improve health in poorer areas;
  7. Approves implementing a worldwide e-health awareness day with the purpose of, educating younger generations about the importance of e-health through means such as informative talks, promoting discussion and interactive training sessions;
  8. Requests all member states to incorporate professions of digital strategizing and coordination into their government body by:
    1. requiring all government bodies to have a national digital strategy coordinator working within the president’s office to oversee all digital usages within public health care and education
    2. allowing all public educational and health care institutions the right to request for discretionary funding to fulfill the purchase of digital equipment and online applications for uses including but not limited to:
      1. digitizing medical records of all patients to guarantee the security and knowledge of the whereabouts of the information as well as allowing doctors across different practices to have easy access to the patient information
      2. the practice of medical appointments being booked fully online guaranteeing that patients and hospitals will always have electronic records of their information;
  9. Further invites the creation of the Association for the Administration of Digital Technologies responsible for the distribution of digital tools to regions with high cases of disease in comparison to medical resources and a lack of sustainable education resources by:
    1. launching the creation of the Administration of Digital Technologies fund through the Office of the High Commissioner to raise awareness of the necessity of resources in public healthcare systems with funds obtained through means such as:
      1. implementing a system of reduction in the cost of purchasing of the digital tools by the Association for the Administration of Digital Technologies for countries classified as “low-income countries” or “lower-middle-income countries” as per the guidelines outlined by the World Economic Situation and Prospects with reduced expenses as follows:
        1. “lower-middle-income countries” are obligated to pay a minimum of 30% of the standard price for every digital tool purchased through the Association of the Administration of Digital Technologies
        2. “low-income countries” are not obligated to give a payment linked to the purchasing of digital tools by the Association of the Administration of Digital Technologies;
  10. Calls for the implementation of the Code of Ethical Data Distribution responsible for the outline of the standards of the sharing of patient information in addition to the repercussions of breaching the guidelines, containing terms on topics including but not limited to:
    1. appropriate use of patient data and the entities that may be granted access to their health data
    2. the supervision of the creation process of the digital tool as a means of ensuring the safety and efficiency of the product, including guidelines for the prerequisites of the supervisor in charge;
  11. Asks for the execution of the use of telemedicine, utilizing Artificial Intelligence (AI), allowing for patients to gain access to healthcare across long distances, through the usage of electronic health cards contained Electronic Health Records (EHRs) possessed by patients as a means of storing patient data that may be accessed by a physician through permission from the said patient;
  12. Recommends member nations to conduct research on the efficiency of the digitalization of health and produce bi-annual reports consisting of: 
    1. surveys regarding the usefulness of eHealth consulting a large variety of citizens
    2. common suggestions in the feedback from a large group of citizens
    3. experiences and advice of medical professional
    4. an analysis of the transition from the prior system of non-digitalized health to digitalized healthcare comparing:
      1. the satisfaction of citizens 
      2. the potential difference in government spending
    5. the progress in erasing the digital divide between rural and urban areas by comparing the number of citizens with access to digital tools
    6. the problems and dedicated solutions.