RESOLUTION YHC 322

FORUM: YOUTH & HEALTH COMMITTEE

QUESTION OF: The use and supervision of digital tools and platforms to respond to a health crisis

SUBMITTED BY: Mozambique

CO-SUBMITTERS:Haiti, UN-Women, DR Congo, South Africa, Oman, Philippines, Mauritania, United Arab Emirates, Senegal, Madagascar, Romania, Argentina, Somalia, Sweden, Togo, Mexico, Burundi, Honduras.

STATUSPassed

THE YOUTH & HEALTH COMMITTEE,

 

Deeply concerned over the uneven distribution of access to digital devices and the internet within the population of Low Income Countries (LICs) and contemplating the resulting digital divide which leads to an imbalance in obtaining digital information, as well as cultural and political participation,

 

Alarmed by the current COVID-19 pandemic, which has greatly complicated the provision of medical services to vulnerable social groups,

 

Observing the usefulness of digital tools in dealing with COVID-19, as electronic communication and online services have facilitated the communication between doctors and patients which could be endangered by personal contact,

 

Bearing in mind the World Health Organization’s (WHO) 2018 resolution on digital health, which supported efforts aiming to accomplish universal health coverage,

 

Recalling the United Nations’ (UN) 17 Goals for Sustainable Development which include good health and well-being, more specifically wish to ensure people live a healthy life, reduce child mortality and raise life expectancy,

 

Recognizing article 55 which reads “the UN shall promote solutions of international economic, social, health, and related problems; and international cultural and educational cooperation” of the UN charter,

 

Noting the negative publicity and distrust in e-health services,

 

  1. Advises Member States to increase digital literacy through campaigns funded by the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Department of Operational Support (UNDOS), and other Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO), regarding the use of digital health tools and platforms by:
      1. offering training programs and seminars provided by medical personnel that instruct the population on how to use the provided digital health resources
      2. appointing healthcare and technology professionals to operate an information hotline, websites and assist in the process of:
        1. optical fibre cable laying
        2. equipment debugging
      3. implementing and supervising digital platforms that inform the public of health situations in particular regions, with technology such as real-time healthcare systems, visualisation maps in order to provide curated, comprehensive clinical data to the public;
  2. Strongly advises the WHO and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to increase digital healthcare accessibility in member states with underdeveloped e-health programs and populations lacking personal devices and internet access by means such as but not limited to:
    1. reducing the digital gap between women and men in healthcare by equipping girls’ schools with electronic devices and internet access
    2. prioritizing the provision of high-speed internet in municipal services
    3. distributing transportable telehealth kiosks for the public with minimized cost and maximum efficiency that will:
      1. provide service to rural and small urban areas in LEDCs with severe lack of technology and internet connectivity 
      2. utilize satellites and solar panels with storage batteries to provide electricity and wireless internet connection
      3. contain smart devices with cameras and microphones that enable an encrypted connection to accredited primary care physicians
      4. contain lockers for charging personal electronic devices
    4. increasing equitable, affordable, and quality access to broadband coverage to both urban and rural populations, particularly in areas with lack of internet connectivity, by means such as but not limited to:
      1. creating broadband availability maps that facilitate the data collection and analysis process by providing necessary data on areas with lack of internet access
      2. improving telecommunication services including Internet Service Providers (ISP) in offering better internet access, routing internet traffic, maintaining the network infrastructure, and providing additional assistance to the public, with the technology necessary for the basic function such as cables and Wi-fi according to specific regional or national circumstances
    5. integrating translation software into the telehealth services to help eliminate any existing language barriers
    6. giving the basic medical units such as pharmacies and grocery stores the resources to help with the provision of telehealth services in areas that do not have high fidelity internet connections;
  3. Calls for the creation of the Global Healthcare Assessment Initiative (GHAI) run by the WHO in order to assess the levels of the global healthcare systems in Less Economically Developed Countries (LEDCs) and More Economically Developed Countries (MEDCs) by: 
      1. comparing hospital’s digital healthcare infrastructures and processes for day to day operation
      2. determining pathway plans to cater to the improvement of digital healthcare structures through ways such as but not limited to:
        1. analysing each nation’s demographics, including socioeconomic and political issues to put together pathway plans
        2. renovating outdated digital tools
        3. implementing new digital tools in public hospitals in LEDCs where there is a lack thereof, in compliance with safety regulations and verification processes
      3. creating a global database that collects information regarding the implementation processes, maintenance and condition, and monitoring of healthcare infrastructure and medicine
      4. establishing a multidimensional e-health index that categories, classifies, analyses, and interprets data in order to evaluate the safety, efficiency, accessibility, and quality of digital tools and platforms in specific contexts, such as geographical locations and emergency settings, and propose potential technological solutions and recommendations;
  4. Recommends efforts to fund and promote the development and the eventual mass-production of low-cost high-efficiency tools and technological devices for accessibility in economically underdeveloped countries by establishing a government sub-organ for professionals and amateurs to apply with product designs and drafts which will evaluate the practicality and overall quality of the product drafts and designs, and fund the research and development of such products;
  5. Strongly encourages  the WHO, local and global NGOs, and willing Member States to work with economically underdeveloped countries that are unable to provide necessary means of accessing digital health services by the means including but not limited to:
    1. implementing debt reliefs and financial packages that are targeted at fostering the development of healthcare infrastructure and technologies by the World Bank and other reliable finance resources
    2. providing tools and technological devices such as tablets and computers
    3. allowing the use of satellites for internet connectivity;
  6. Encourages the creation of an advisory committee funded by UN that:
    1. will help elderly people to be specialized with digital tools,
    2. keep them informed of when they need to do their health exams,
    3. provide them with effective treatment and suggest what medical supplies they should buy,
    4. provide them with information about their disease so they don’t need to go to see a doctor, risking their health during any pandemic or epidemic;
  7. Calls​ for the Member States in cooperation with World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Department of Operational Support (UNDOS), International Telecommunication Union (ITU), and International Monetary Fund (IMF) to establish “Promotion of Healthcare Digitalization Programme (PHDP)” in order to narrow the digital divide of healthcare systems especially in that of the Less Economically Developed Nations (LEDCs) through means such as but not limited to:

    1. the establishment of a patent agency under the flagship of PHDP and World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), which will:
      1. open access for any individual or organizations to apply with product designs and drafts of technological devices,
      2. evaluate the practicality and overall quality of the product drafts and designs,
      3. provide funds for the further research and developments of product designs proven to be accessible, in order to promote the development and the eventual mass-production of low-cost, high-efficiency tools and technological devices for accessibility in LEDCs,
    2. the holding of the annual multinational touring seminar supported by the scheme of PHDP that:
      1. analyzes the survey information & statistical data provided by relevant nations in order to help those areas to better comprehend the measures they will be taking in the future,
      2. co-drafting a year-end summary in regard to the issues by utilizing the information from different nations, which will serve as a guideline for the implementation of digitalization as according to the circumstances of each Member States,
      3. welcomes the participation of any telecommunication & medical enterprises and private investors interested in the investment of the program,
    3. implementation of “Master Plan for the Medical Digitalization of Developing Nations, 2021-2025” that:
      1. designs a unified standard for the connection of submarine cables, in order to improve the digital connectivity between coastal and land-locked LEDCs,
      2. offers investment facilitations to ICT companies willing to lower broadband fees for medical institutions of the LEDCs.