The first-ever Health Hackathon held by WHO in Lviv, in the west of Ukraine, brought together more than 40 teams of innovators to address patient and doctor challenges. In order to strengthen health systems and functions of public health, digitization is an essential step forward. An unprecedented rush has been made to implement IT solutions in the healthcare sector due to the COVID-19 pandemic and impacts of the war.
“The future of health is digital. Here we have gathered young minds to be among those who are now shaping it,” said Dr Hans Henri P. Kluge, WHO Regional Director for Europe, in his opening remarks.
For 48 hours, students, health care workers, marketers, IT specialists, and activists worked to develop digital solutions that would contribute to Ukrainian health care and meet the needs of patients, doctors, and professional unions in order to contribute to the national health care strategy. Over 30 experts from the health, technology, and business sectors mentored teams to develop digital solutions for five health challenges.
“E-health has advanced over the past years, and Ukraine has been developing its IT products in different fields, including health care. We invited participants of the Health Hackathon to contribute by tackling challenges around health promotion, disease prevention, mental health, health workforce support and health-care management,” explained Dr Jarno Habicht, WHO Representative in Ukraine.