Harnessing the power of digital health technologies is essential to driving progress in the fight against tuberculosis (TB). The COVID-19 pandemic has further underlined the importance of digital tools and international cooperation and collaboration for global health.
This report, produced in collaboration with our partners Microsoft and the Stop TB Partnership, shows that there is a need for countries, donors and procurers to use their purchasing power and influence to promote market shaping for these tools. Shortcomings of financing, policies and appropriate resources need to be addressed in order to make digital health tools available in each country and realize the full potential of existing innovations. Different countries use different infrastructures as the backbone of their health systems, making it difficult to distribute new tools and digital subsystems globally.
This report explores existing digital tools used for the management of TB in 13 countries, including documentation of best practices, outstanding gaps and priorities for the future. The report also contains a survey of specific tools used across the cascade of care, case studies of digital systems and how they were implemented, and 13 country profiles that document the digital ecosystem in each of the countries studied.
The high-level findings and recommendations across four thematic areas are summarized below:
- Multiple existing platforms for TB case management can be used by countries;
- Clear country-level policies on data governance and management, including cloud storage, are needed for the adoption of new digital tools and the successful implementation of improved systems;
- Consultations between countries and global partners can help address pricing or licensing concerns that prevent countries from using certain tools;
- User-centered approaches are needed for countries to achieve desired outcomes with digital tools;
- Awareness of local infrastructure gaps is critical for countries to realize the potential of digital tools.
Source: Global Fund