Karl Brown, who works as the associate director of Applied Technology at the Rockefeller Foundation, shared his vision and experience on the work of the Foundation in eHealth throughout the world. He reinforced important concepts and highlighted experiences to take into consideration when implementing projects of information technologies in public health.
“Sometimes a human is the best technology for eHealth,” said Brown. “A well-trained expert will continue to have an impact on the health system throughout his or her whole career.”
Throughout his presentation, Brown emphasized that the key to success in eHealth is to build on the experiences and knowledge of other countries. “The problems are different, but the underlying solution is usually common and shareable,” he said. “No country should have to reinvent the wheel.” He highlighted three areas of work on eHealth: the need for integrated health information systems, the development of public policies, and the role of building capacities on eHealth.
Several challenges persist in the Americas regarding the implementation of eHealth practices: broad segments of the population have only limited access to health services and lack sufficient human and financial resources as well as infrastructure. At the same time, access to information and communication technologies (ICTs) varies across countries and population groups.