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PATH welcomed as new member of the Digital Public Goods Alliance

May 12, 2022 by PATH

PATH looks forward to supporting even greater alignment in advancing digital public goods to increase donor and country confidence in the value of adapting and scaling specific digital tools.

Furthering PATH’s leadership and partnership in the digital health ecosystem, PATH has joined the Digital Public Goods Alliance (DPGA) as a new member. The DPGA is a multi-stakeholder initiative with a mission to accelerate the attainment of the sustainable development goals in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) by facilitating the discovery, development, use of, and investment in digital public goods (DPGs). PATH is excited to help boost the DPGA’s progress in achieving its mission and elevating digital public goods for health.

PATH’s new membership follows participation from Digital Square at PATH in the DPGA’s community of practice on health, accompanied by co-authorship of a white paper with the DPGA to improve understanding of the relationship between DPGs and global goods for health.

“I’m very excited that PATH has become an official member of the DPGA, building on our engagement with the alliance over the past two years,” said Amanda BenDor, Deputy Director of Partnerships for Digital Square. “This partnership will not only advance the discovery, development, and use of digital technologies across sectors, but will also strengthen and promote the scale up of digital public goods for health.”

As part of PATH’s dedication to accelerating health equity to ensure all people and communities thrive, PATH collaborates with government ministries of health, the private sector, and donors to strengthen the use of digital technologies and data for improved health services. Currently, at least half of the world cannot obtain essential health services. Digital interventions have a key role to play in enhancing the reach and quality of health services to improve health access and outcomes.

Central to the work of advancing health equity through digitally enabled health services is the advancement of DPGs for health. PATH and the DPGA share the belief that this is crucial for saving lives and improving health around the world. Free and open source digital health tools can be used across different countries and health program verticals, cutting down on fragmentation and duplication to accelerate scale and health impact. In close alignment with the DPGA’s mission, PATH’s contribution to strengthening the DPG ecosystem is accelerated through Digital Square, which brings its resources, coalitions, and portfolio of global goods together to support large-scale, high-quality, sustainable implementations of digital health interventions.

PATH has prioritized three core activities for inclusion in the DPGA Roadmap, which is a coordination, alignment, engagement, and communication tool to capture stakeholder activities that complement and advance the DPGA’s strategic objectives. PATH’s activities are designed to advance the digital health ecosystem in a way that emphasizes transparency and accountability, and to increase the capacity of LMICs to create, adopt, and maintain DPGs for health. These three activity areas consist of:

  • The Global Goods Guidebook – Over the past five years, Digital Square has catalyzed a range of digital health investments, including the development and maturation of global goods that are readily adaptable at scale. These global goods are used in more than 130 countries and showcased in Digital Square’s Global Goods Guidebook. Digital Square updates and enhances this resource annually.
  • The “Total Cost of Ownership” Tool – Market forces have a role in determining which digital health tools get introduced, adopted, and scaled; the underlying costs of digital tools; and the long-term opportunities for financing the digital transformation of health systems. Digital Square developed and continues to improve this tool (which is accessible via Digital Square’s market analytics webpage) to aid government leaders, implementing partners, and investors in understanding what costs to include in budgeting for the sustainable implementation of DPGs, including operating expenses, common cost variances, and hidden costs.
  • The “Informatics Savvy Organization” (ISO) Framework – Created through PATH’s CDC-funded Technical Assistance Platform (TAP) Project, this framework supports the use and reuse of health information systems through strengthening the vision for and governance of these systems, thereby increasing LMIC capacity to adopt and sustain DPGs for health.

Countries around the world are transforming their health systems to take advantage of the digital tools, approaches, and data they produce as they work toward universal health coverage. Achieving health equity is increasingly reliant on ensuring that everyone has access to and benefits from health services enhanced by appropriate digital technologies. Making this vision a reality is only attainable through robust, aligned partnership.

PATH is ready for greater collaboration with the DPGA community in an effort to promote innovation to accelerate the aims of ending poverty, protecting the planet, and improving the lives and prospects of everyone, everywhere.