CDC global digital health strategy
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Filetype[PDF-823.21 KB]

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      Lack of timely, accurate data has long hampered global efforts to combat and prevent disease. The global response to COVID-19 has brought greater attention to these challenges, underscoring the global community’s vulnerability to infectious disease.

      To better prepare for response to future threats, CDC has launched the Data Modernization Initiative (DMI), to improve the quality, availability, and use of pandemic and response-related data. While DMI’s main focus is domestic, DMI’s principles, products, and impacts will apply globally. The best way to stop diseases from spreading globally is to detect and contain them early, in the countries in which they originate. One way to support this effort is to have accurate and timely data generated by country health systems, as part of routine individual and public health service delivery. Many countries are pursuing this goal under the title of “digital transformation” or “digital health” and these efforts are being actively supported by global organizations and other donors.

      While the application of digital tools to health service delivery has been undertaken for several years in lower- and middle-income countries, large-scale success and uses have been limited. Health systems are complex and constantly adapting. They are composed of chains of many linked services and digitally “fixing” one broken link in a chain of multiple broken links is not going to yield success. In recognition of this complexity, many countries are now taking an “enterprise approach” to health systems, looking at the health system more holistically, addressing key issues including digital literacy and data governance, and organizing and allocating resources more effectively across the entire system. This enterprise approach is also being supported by global stakeholders as part of the digital transformation paradigm.

      The essence of this document then, is a collective roadmap shared by CDC and other global partners, to better align efforts and support countries in deploying enterprise approaches to realize the digital transformation or digital enablement of health services. This will not only benefit incountry health service delivery, reducing morbidity and mortality, but also provide disease experts globally with additional data sources to more effectively combat and control future outbreaks.


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