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UN requires private business to play its role in beating health inequality

Dr Ahmed El Saeed, Focal Area Lead at the United Nations Global Pulse Finland, Executive Office of the UN Secretary-General, said: “International development is everybody’s business. You can do business and do good, and this is a message to the private sector, there is a very important role for the private sector to play in…

Dr Ahmed El Saeed, Focal Area Lead in the United Nations Global Pulse Finland, Executive Office of the UN Secretary-General, stated:”International development is everybody’s business. You can do business and do good, and this is a message to the private sector, there is a very important role for the private sector to play in building back better and fairer.”

He was speaking at the’Tackling Health Inequalities: Levelling-up Beyond COVID-19′ closing keynote session. Panel members also contained Dr Deborah Maufi, Chief Medical Officer in Babymoon Care, both the Netherlands and Lord Victor Adebowale, Chair, NHS Confederation, UK. The session was moderated by Denise Hines from HIMSS.

WHY IT MATTERS?

The pandemic has exacerbated long-standing social, political and economic inequalities, jointly with health inequalities, according to Dr Deborah Maufi.

ON THE RECORD

El Saeed stated there was a significant digital divide:”Not everybody has access to good internet service or data access or is able to actually utilise some of the services that have migrated at a quick pace to a virtual format.

Many of the healthcare services were not even accessible to many people before now, becoming more and more difficult because they cannot access them, also virtually.   So, the digital divide is also something to be highlighted here because we do not want to see the digital divide becoming the new web of social injustice.”

Lord Victor Adebowale summarized three important data battles:”My concern is that a number of the algorithms might be impactful on particular communities, certain cultural groups, usually individuals that are poor at the sharp end of the inverse care law, the care law that states that those people in most need of health and healthcare tend to get it the least.

The second obstacle around data is investigation and the use of information to manage population health, wellness stratification, predictive health…And the third challenge is about service layout…How do we use information to design services that are accessible and equitable, especially for those people who desire those s

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