UK government publication: Data saves lives: reshaping health and social care with data (3)

23 June, 2022

Thankyou for HIFA ( ) publishing this piece about the UK government publication: "Data Saves Lives: reshaping health and social care with data" and about our proposal to the United Nations World Data Forum

Hangzhou China April 24 to 27 2023.

Data and information are also a plank of the WHO "operational Framework for Primary care" : Operational Framework for Primary Health Care ( <> and from my ageing experience (!) a need for a UN backed personal health data processing standard seems very attractive - especially as citizens read, utilize, share and contribute to their and their dependants digital care records on their phones - as implied below.

"Digital technologies — from information and communications technologies, such as the internet and mobile telephony, to the more recent development of advanced computing leading to use of big data, artificial intelligence and genomics — are improving effectiveness and efficiency of integrated health services and delivery of care. Although access is not yet universal, more than eight in 10 people in developing countries own a mobile phone and nearly half the global population uses the Internet. These technologies are more equitably distributed across the planet than income, in that even the region with the lowest mobile penetration — sub-Saharan Africa — has 78 mobile cell subscriptions per 100 people. (54,55)

"The revolution in information and communications technologies has brought about important shifts in how individuals and communities manage their own health and access information about health conditions, treatment options and the availability (and sometimes quality) of service providers. These shifts can play an important role in advancing the core PHC tenet of empowering people and communities by putting new power in the hands of people and shifting the nature of the relationship between medical provider and patient by reducing the asymmetry of information. However, too much of the information currently available is only in English or other languages that are typically not the first language of people in low- and middle-income countries. In addition, low digital health literacy limits the potential impact of these information and communications technologies in these settings.

"Digital technologies are creating new ways that people can hold service providers to account, as well as enabling more effective and larger-scale advocacy and health promotion efforts. Digital technologies are also having profound effects on the provision of health services, particularly through the rapid expansion of digital health interventions, particularly mHealth

(mobile health) and eHealth (electronic health) initiatives. Governments have rapidly responded to this changing landscape by developing national strategies

"Today more than 120 countries have developed national policies or strategies for eHealth, telemedicine or digital health.(56,57) Digital health interventions may target four primary uses:(58) • for clients (for example, targeted client communication, such as reminders, peer communications, personal health tracking and citizen reporting) • for health workers (for example, client identification and registration, health records, decision-support tools, telemedicine, referral coordination, training, prescription and/or diagnostics management) • for health systems’ managers (for example, human resources management, supply chain management, civil registration and vital statistics) • for data services (for example, data collection, management and use, location mapping and data exchange).

HIFA profile: Richard Fitton is a retired family doctor - GP. Professional interests: Health literacy, patient partnership of trust and implementation of healthcare with professionals, family and public involvement in the prevention of modern lifestyle diseases, patients using access to professional records to overcome confidentiality barriers to care, patients as part of the policing of the use of their patient data

Email address: richardpeterfitton7 AT