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  • Writer's pictureVoltaire Santillan

The Unilab Foundation, Pijar Foundation, and Google Cloud Explore Strengthening Healthcare Systems

Jakarta, 4 October 2023 – Healthcare systems transformation to prevent another pandemic is a major global agenda today. Indonesia’s Pijar Foundation in collaboration with Philippine’s Unilab Foundation, through its program titled "Global Future Fellows (GFF) 2023: Advancing Southeast Asia's Predictive Healthcare," is collaborating with Google Cloud to explore the power of technology in strengthening healthcare systems in Southeast Asia.

On Thursday, 4 October 2023, 41 fellows of multi-sectoral strategic actors in Southeast Asia’s healthcare sector who are part of the GFF Healthcare 2023 program, gathered and engaged in discussions at Google’s Indonesia office. These 41 power actors represent governments, large companies and startups, philanthropic/investment organizations, and community organizations. A total of 6 ASEAN countries are represented in this program: Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei Darussalam, Thailand, and the Philippines.

This collaboration holds significant meaning not only for Indonesia in a national context, but also in the regional context, positioning them as a healthcare transformation leader in Southeast Asia. Amid the increasingly complex global health threats, especially after the Covid-19 pandemic, the need to strengthen healthcare systems has become a shared priority that requires innovation and multi-sector collaboration.

Google Cloud introduced Healthcare Data Engine, its end-to-end solution for healthcare and life sciences organizations that harmonizes data from multiple sources, including medical records, claims, clinical trials, and research data. Their Healthcare Data Engine helps operational leaders, researchers, and clinicians gain real-time, holistic views of patient longitudinal records, and enables advanced analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) in a secure, compliant, and scalable cloud environment. This is crucial for building a more responsive and comprehensive healthcare system in Southeast Asia.

In addition to Healthcare Data Engine, Google Cloud also discussed use cases for Med-PaLM 2, which harnesses the power of Google’s large language models (LLMs), aligned to the medical domain to more accurately and safely answer medical questions. Industry-tailored LLMs like Med-PaLM 2 are part of Google Cloud’s comprehensive suite of generative AI capabilities. Healthcare organizations can explore using these capabilities to facilitate rich, informative discussions, answer complex medical questions, and find insights in complicated and unstructured medical texts, or even draft short- and long-form responses and summarize documentation and insights from internal datasets and bodies of scientific knowledge.

The GFF Healthcare 2023 strategic actors did not just learn about Google Cloud's Healthcare Data Engine and Med-PaLM 2, but also committed to exploring their implementation through a Collaborative Action Plan and Policy Paper of GFF Healthcare 2023.

"We are delighted to share our technological innovation with Pijar Foundation and 41 multi-sector strategic actors from Southeast Asia. This includes Healthcare Data Engine and Med-PaLM 2 that are designed specifically for use in healthcare and life sciences, as well as our broader portfolio of cloud, analytics, and AI capabilities that are relevant across industries. Improving the flow and unification of data across healthcare systems—referred to as data interoperability—is one of the most important building blocks to leveraging AI, and it enables organizations to run more effectively and improve patient care, while helping people live healthier lives. We believe that this collaboration will assist in shaping a more comprehensive, adaptive, and high-quality healthcare service system, both across Indonesia and Southeast Asia," said Anang Efendy, Country Manager, Enterprise and Public Sector, Indonesia, Google Cloud.

Cazadira F. Tamzil, Director of Public Policy at Pijar Foundation and concurrently the Lead for the GFF Healthcare 2023 program, stated, "Health challenges are highly complex and require cross-sector contributions from the medical, policy, economic, communication, and technology fields. We hope GFF Healthcare2023 can serve as a bridge towards concrete collaborative actions across the region."

Anne P. Racoma, Partnerships & Special Projects Director at the Unilab Foundation adds to this statement by saying that: ” We are excited to collaborate with Pijar Foundation and Google Cloud in advancing predictive healthcare in Southeast Asia through the Global Future Fellows program. This initiative brings healthcare leaders together to enhance accessibility and inclusivity, fostering a more equitable and sustainable healthcare future for all, regardless of income or location. Our goal here is to create people friendly, tech-powered, and inclusive healthcare system that benefits everyone in the region. We're excited to see what we can achieve by working together.”

Global Future Fellows (GFF) 2023 "Advancing Southeast Asia’s Predictive Healthcare" is held from 2 to 5 October 2023. Fellows or participants are engaged in a series of in-depth discussions, presentations by experts, and specialized masterclasses on collaboration. Discussion results will be consolidated into a Collaborative Action Plan and Policy Paper, which will then be presented and coordinated with relevant decision-makers.

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