On July 24-26, 2018, USAID TB CARE II project organized a global workshop on “Digital Health Technologies for a World Free of Tuberculosis” in New Delhi, India. USAID TB CARE II team organized this workshop jointly with USAID/India Mission and India India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The workshop was attended by 151 participants (57% male; 43% female) from countries across the globe, including 8 of the 10 NAP countries, including India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Myanmar, Pakistan (remotely), Philippines, South Africa, and Ukraine. The workshop was joined by over 40 participants from private sector, 50 participants from other implementing partners and international organizations and 8 from the academia. The workshop was also joined by participants from digital technology developers, digital health experts and entrepreneurs from the US, Canada, Europe, India and the region.
This workshop included representation from NAP country national TB programs, USAID/W and India, the World Health Organization, the World Bank, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (based in US and India) the CDC, and USAID. Private tech companies and implementing organizations also participated. Dignitaries and high level officials from the US Embassy to India as well as the Government of India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare joined for panel discussions, country presentations, and technology demonstrations throughout the workshop.
The workshop aimed to: 1) demonstrate and showcase innovative digital health solutions for TB; 2) promote digital health solutions as cost effective and high impact platforms to advance TB efforts in the 10 NAP countries; 3) advance public private partnership and resource mobilization efforts among in-country stakeholders from government sectors, technology companies and interested industry groups, and NGOs/implementing organizations to collaborate and further support current technologies or new opportunities for TB; and 4) help countries to initiate or scale up high quality digital technologies for TB which integrate evidence of impact thinking for effective and sustainable impact.
The participants from the NAP countries delivered presentations that highlighted a landscape analysis of the existing digital technologies in the 10 NAP countries in general and TB in particular. Participants were also able to review and share evidence and best practices of effective and integrated digital health interventions in TB care and control in the 10 NAP countries and showcase digital technology solutions and tools implemented on the global scale and locally in India, that support NTPs to achieve global and national objectives.
This workshop provided the participants from the NAP countries with opportunity to brainstorm to 1) identify needs and opportunities for development of new digital health tools to support NAP countries in combating DR TB, 2) select a few innovative digital solutions for each NAP country to focus on in 2018-2019 which will support current national TB strategic plans and 3) to develop a national digital health agenda for TB in line with local needs and capacity to scale up and sustain.
The workshop achieved great outcomes which further support USAID efforts to support the NAP countries to implement a TB treatment adherence assessment tool. The digital solutions, resources, and lessons shared with participants will help these countries to introduce applicable digital technologies to monitor and improve adherence to TB and MDR-TB treatment.