BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, 11 September 2017 – The 6th ASEAN China Health Ministers Meeting (ACHMM) Roundtable Discussion was held on 7 September in Bandar Seri Begawan with the theme “Technology to Improve Health.”

“Our continued collaboration is testament to the importance that our countries place on health and a recognition that the value of health capital exceeds any other form of capital. We strongly believe that developing and maintaining the vitality of health systems in the region and promoting regional cooperation in health, not only will we enhance people’s health, but it also adds a vital contribution to economic and social development in our region,” said Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Zulkarnain Bin Haji Hanafi, Minister of Health, Brunei Darussalam and Co-Chair of the 6th ACHMM.

Wang Hesheng, Vice Minister of Department of International Cooperation, National Health and Family Planning Commission of the People’s Republic of China particularly shared China’s experience and plans in harnessing science and technology innovation. Hesheng emphasised that China’s capacity in health care as well as in science and technology innovation has significantly increased through pharmaceutical and medical device research and development. It has contributed to improving the health of the people of China according to the Vice Minister.

Further, in the adopted Joint Statement, China and ASEAN Member States recognised the value and implications of the use of technology in healthcare and acknowledged the connected health approach that involves the convergence of health technology, digital media and mobile devices which enable patients, caregivers and healthcare professionals to access data and information more easily and improve the quality and outcomes of both health and social care.

The meeting also identified priority areas for cooperation which include e-Health and Information, Communication Technology, prevention and control of communicable diseases, public health emergency response mechanism and capacity for health impact of natural disasters, among others.