Health

Challenges & opportunities

Implementing sustainable healthcare systems and technologies

The World Health Statistics report of the World Health Organization, published long before the COVID-19 pandemic, shows that at least 50% of the world’s population do not have access to essential health services. At the same time, many of those who do have access to such services suffer undue financial hardship. The first major pandemic of our century has further heightened awareness that concerted efforts are needed to fight health emergencies, address the growing burden of non-communicable diseases and tackle determinants of health such as air pollution.

Health plays a central role in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and needs more interaction with different areas, such as climate, energy, nutrition, and water, for the overall achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). More than ever, science, technology and innovation are of vital importance to the development of sustainable healthcare systems.

Conference programme

Health sessions

Plenary session

Looking beyond COVID-19: Integrated pathways to address health, economy, and climate

28/10/2020, 14:45 - 15:45

Plenary

COVID-19, the first major pandemic of our century, confirms the crucial importance of sustainable healthcare systems and technologies in fighting health emergencies. Although science, technology and innovation are challenged during this pandemic, they play a vital role in how countries tackle the spread of the coronavirus and prepare for new outbreaks.

Systems for faster development of tests, vaccines, and pharmaceuticals are made possible by intensive collaboration among countries and coordination by the WHO. The use of telemedicine and other communication technologies is instrumental in making health systems more responsive and productive during critical pandemic phases. The integration of mathematical sciences in the prediction and modelling of essential elements proves to be a valuable resource for health sector authorities and managers to make rapid and precise decisions. Access to off-grid decentralised renewable power is crucial in mitigating the human catastrophe and speeding up the global recovery process, especially for developing countries.

Speakers during this plenary session will shed light on how different technological innovations are helping the fight against COVID-19 in different regions of the world. At the same time, they will reflect on the legal plausibility, ethical soundness and effectiveness of deploying emerging technologies under time pressure. Striking the right balance is crucial for maintaining public trust in evidence-based public health interventions.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic clearly shows we are facing a double-edged challenge in the long term. While the economic slowdown can have adverse effects on countries’ ongoing efforts towards climate mitigation, the gradual resumption of large-scale economic activities can put renewed pressure on the environment. In this way, the COVID-19 pandemic reconfirms the need for long-term development models designed around the core principle of building a resilient economy that ensures health and wellbeing of citizens and tackles climate change challenges. This plenary session will be an excellent opportunity to examine new technologies that catalyse broader change and tackle the climate change challenges ahead, maintaining the positive outcomes of this COVID-19 pandemic.

Plenary session

Looking beyond COVID-19: Integrated pathways to address health, economy, and climate

COVID-19 confirms the crucial importance of sustainable healthcare systems and technologies in fighting health emergencies. During this plenary session, speakers will shed light on how innovations such as telemedicine, mathematical modelling and off-grid renewable power are helping the fight against COVID-19. They will also highlight how the intensive collaboration among countries, coordinated by the WHO, enables faster development of tests, vaccines, and pharmaceuticals.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic reinforces the need for long-term development models designed around the principle of building a resilient economy that ensures health and wellbeing of all citizens. Plenary speakers will therefore also discuss the need for new technologies that catalyse broader change and tackle the climate change challenges ahead.

Deep dive sessions

Technological innovations for sustainable healthcare

Thematic coordinators

Health

Thematic partners

Thematic partners

Health
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