03 Sep 2023
By Olekantse Sennamose
The World Health Organisation (WHO) is looking into how it can promote the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the health sector.
WHO regional director for Africa, Dr Matshidiso Moeti said this during the 73rd Session of the Regional Committee for Africa (RC73) that was held in Gaborone from August 28 to September 1.
Dr Moeti said artificial intelligence was relatively new and was still being discussed for different purposes by individual nations.
That followed the request by member states for WHO to support and adopt the use of artificial intelligence and digitalisation to improve efficiency and effectiveness of the health sector in the continent.
They also implored WHO to offer guidance to counties as well as help them up-skill on the use of the technology.
However, Dr Moeti said there was no doubt that AI was upon the world and was going to play a key part in the way that business was conducted in all spheres.
“WHO is looking at how to promote the use of artificial intelligence in such a way that we leverage the technology but we are aware of some of the benefits and risks aspects that are being discussed at global level in its use,” she said.
She added that the technology could even offer opportunities for accelerated progress in what organisations such as WHO were doing.
“We thank member states for reminding us of the importance of defining how it can support us in our work on health in the region,” she said.
On other issues, Dr Moeti said WHO was working on an extensive process of improving documentation of its work and would continue to share with member states any information so they stayed informed.
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