Breaking Ground for HATID ASEAN

 In Research

Title: Breaking Ground for HATID ASEAN
Date Published: 2017
Published by: Institute of Philippine Culture – Ateneo de Manila University


Prior to the hosting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in the Philippines in 2017, the Institute of Philippine Culture of Ateneo de Manila University (IPC-ADMU), in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD), implemented a series of convergence activities. In the international arena, partnerships were forged with the College of Public Health Sciences, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand, and the National Institute of Health Research and Development (NIHRD), Ministry of Health, Jakarta, Indonesia. Preparatory core group meetings for the Health Technologies for Informed Decision-making in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (HATID ASEAN) project were held in Bangkok in October 2015 and in Jakarta in April 2016.

HATID ASEAN is a project of the ASEAN Network for Drugs, Diagnostics, Vaccines and Traditional Medicines Innovation (ASEAN-NDI) for the ASEAN Committee on Science and Technology (COST) that aims to establish a convergence platform for the sharing of information and strategies in Information Communication Technology (ICT) for Health. In the Philippines, IPC- ADMU and DOST-PCHRD initiated the eHealth TABLET (Technology Assisted Boards for LGU Efficiency and Transparency) for Informed Decision-making of Local Government Units, or eHATID LGU as the anchor project of HATID ASEAN.

eHATID LGU is intended to provide rural health units (RHUs) in the Philippines with a cloud- based solution for migrating patient medical records into electronic medical records (EMRs) using a customized software installed in computer tablets. Among the issues it seeks to address is the need for real-time processing of data captured from provider facilities, and the immediate submission of transactions to national data centers. This project is aligned with the Philippine Department of Health (DOH) vision of eHealth 2020, which involves leveraging information technology to achieve a marked improvement in health services in the context of public health.

The ASEAN COST, through its subsidiary body, recommended HATID ASEAN for adoption by the ASEAN Sub-Committee on Biotechnology (SCB). The ASEAN SCB, at its 48th Meeting last 24 October 2016 in Siem Reap, Cambodia, recommended this for inclusion in the ASEAN Plan of Action on Science, Technology and Innovation (APASTI) 20162025 Implementation Plan (AIP), which the ASEAN COST approved at its 71st Meeting in Siem Reap on 28 October 2016.

As part of the APASTI 20162025, HATID ASEAN is the anchor program of the 2017 eHealth initiatives of the Philippines as well as the longer-term eHealth policy and program initiatives that are planned to commence after the 2017 HATID ASEAN kickoff activities. This includes the implementation of the proposed multi-year project on Health Technologies for Informed Decision- making of Local Governments on Noncommunicable Diseases in three ASEAN countries, which is spearheaded by the Philippines with convergence partners from Indonesia and Thailand.

The launching of the eHealth ASEAN initiatives and the HATID ASEAN kickoff meeting were held on 2728 February 2017 in the Philippines. Cohosting the event were ASEAN-NDI, DOST- PCHRD, IPC-ADMU, and the provincial health office (PHO) of Pangasinan.

This monograph attempts to synthesize the findings from all these preparatory activities, specifically the workshops in Bangkok (Thailand) in October 2015, the consultation meetings in Jakarta (Indonesia) in April 2016, and the HATID ASEAN kickoff meeting in Manila and Pangasinan (Philippines) in February 2017. It opens with a chapter describing the challenges of regional health governance, given the various health problems faced by each country. A backdrop is provided to show how a vibrant and dynamic regional health collaboration can possibly take place amid the unique economic, political, and social conditions pervading within each country. Subsequently, the proceedings of the three workshop meetings are presented, beginning with Thailand, followed by Indonesia and the Philippines. The information contained in this monograph gives input that is crucial in fine-tuning the existing health collaboration among Indonesia, the Philippines, and Thailand. Hopefully, it will serve as an invitation to other ASEAN countries to be a part of this regional health initiative.

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