Fondation Pierre Fabre: improving healthcare in the Global South.
The Fondation Pierre Fabre is an operating foundation that designs and develops its own programmes with its local partners. As of 2020, the Foundation is overseeing 35 programmes in 19 countries in Africa, Southeast Asia, Lebanon and Haiti. Disinterestedly and independently, with a strictly humanitarian goal, the Fondation Pierre Fabre strives to enable communities from less advanced and emerging countries, as well as those plunged into severe crisis by political or economic upheaval and/or natural disaster, to access the quality and levels of everyday health care and the widely-used drugs defined by the WHO and other organisations as essential to human health.
Since its founding, it has progressively focused its initiatives on five areas of intervention, including eHealth. On 15 October 2020, the Fondation Pierre Fabre held its Global South eHealth Observatory annuel conference. Broadcasted live, this edition dealt with the “role of Information and Communication Technologies in fighting pandemics” :
Back in 2015, the Fondation Pierre Fabre recognised the potential to be found in the rise of information and communication technologies (ITCs). Adoption of these new tools worldwide, including by the poorest populations in low- and middle-income countries, provided an opportunity to lessen health inequalities. Many entities in these countries – healthcare facilities, universities, startups, NGOs, charitable organisations – were experimenting with innovative solutions while governments sought ways to incorporate technological tools to manage, improve and measure their national health policies. In light of this explosion of initiatives, the Fondation Pierre Fabre created the Global South eHealth Observatory in 2016 to understand, analyse, share and promote digital innovations as a way to improve healthcare for the most underprivileged populations. Though originally designed as a platform for identifying and presenting the most promising solutions, with an online database listing more than 160 projects today (www.odess.io), the Observatory now also serves as a networking tool for all those working in the eHealth field, such as through supporting the training and information sharing that are essential to structuring new public health models.
Every year, the Global South eHealth Observatory annual conference provides a setting in which ideas and information can be exchanged between experts, entities working in the field, international organisations, ministries and NGOs on issues related to transforming health strategies in ways that can benefit everyone. This conference is webcast live and streamed on more than a dozen digital campuses of the Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie in Africa and Asia. It presents the digital health initiatives selected by the Observatory’s expert panel after a continuous monitoring process and a call for entries. The projects chosen to receive the annual awards fall into several scopes of action: public awareness and education, training of healthcare professionals, remote consultation and telemedicine, data collection and analysis, access to health insurance and more, all to promote prevention and healthcare access among the poorest African and Asian populations.
This year, the Foundation has focused substantially on monitoring and documenting Covid-19’s impact on how information and communication technologies are being developed and adopted as part of healthcare responses, and thus decided to make it the central theme of the 2020 conference. In April, the Foundation asked Samir Abdelkrim and Julie Lanckriet (StartupBRICS) to perform a study entitled “Tech Use in Fighting Epidemics in West Africa”, which showcased achievements and knowledge gained during the handling of the Ebola crisis and the swift rise of innovative solutions to the Covid-19 epidemic. The results of the study will be presented at the beginning of the conference.By exploring the theme “ICT’s and Health crisis”, the day’s objective is to learn the lessons of past epidemics, establish an initial assessment of effective measures in managing the current health crisis and anticipate its impact on the organisation of health systems over the longer term.
Find here the different video chapters of the day, the complete programme, as well as the 5 laureates projects awarded this year : https://www.fondationpierrefabre.org/en/areas-of-intervention/icts-and-health-crisis-relive-the-conference/
Fondation Pierre Fabre