World Economic Forum Drives Health Data Initiative

The Global Health Data Charter calls for the use of technology to overcome worldwide gaps in health information collection, availability, privacy, and analysis.
17 Leading EHR Vendors
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Developed by the World Economic Forum, with project advisory services and support provided by Deloitte and a broad group of stakeholders, the charter covers both clinical health data that will be used for wellness promotion as well as health management and operational data used for financial and administrative purposes.

Raynaud also explained that while the charter does not itself generate a platform or engage in the provision of data, it does calls for organizations to work towards the availability of accurate, high-quality health data when and where it is needed. The Global Health Data Charter consists of eight key principles representing the data gaps which the charter founders identified as the most pressing and most realistic to improve in the short term. These principles revolve around two fundamental gaps -- access to and privacy of health data.

Access refers to the ability to effectively and efficiently get the right data, in the right format, where and when it is needed. Privacy advocates for the development of protocols to address the challenges and risks associated with data misuse.

George Halvorson, CEO of Kaiser Permanente and member of the World Economic Forum global health advisory board, said in a statement that the charter will advance the management and access of health data.

"Access to better data is essential to identifying and understanding gaps, allocating resources, and monitoring interventions as well as furthering innovation and research. Better management of data is not only a best practice -- it's a business imperative," Halvorson said.

"The Global Health Data Charter is in line with the long-term strategy of HIMMS to advance the sharing and interoperability of health data -- good data is a prerequisite for making the right decisions at all levels," John P. Hoyt, executive VP at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, said in a statement. "(HIMMS) aims to encourage the adoption of the charter to its members and the organizations it surveys."

The charter has received endorsements from the Global Health Council (GHC), Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), International Council of Nurses (ICN), International Federation of Health Plans (IFHP), International Hospital Federation (IHF), International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP), Population Services International (PSI), Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH), and World Information Technology Services Association (WITSA).