Side Meetings


Launch of an ASEAN Collaborative Program for Cambodia and Other Countries: Building Data and National Capacity to Improve Health Systems Performance, Resilience, and Pandemic Preparedness


  • 14:00 - 17:30 HRS. (BKK)

  • Venue : Lotus Suite 9

  • Contact Person : Piya Hanvoravongchai,

  • China Medical Board
  • National Institute of Public Health - Cambodia
  • National University of Singapore
  • Hong Kong University School of Public Health
  • Yale School of Public Health
  • University of Health Sciences - Cambodia
  • Mahidol University
  • Prince of Songkla University

The ASEAN region has great disparity between the high and low income countries which is reflected in their investments in the health sector and the basic health indicators such as access to primary care, life expectancy at birth, under 5 and maternal mortality and their ability to respond to epidemic threats.     The vulnerability of the region to future epidemics is dependent upon the ability and timeliness of every country’s response so it is in the interest of the region to upgrade the health systems of those most vulnerable to a basic and minimal standard. 

The pandemic of COVID has laid bare the major economic impact of this historic event in the region and the weaknesses of the health systems in some countries to be adequately prepared to respond and recover rapidly.  In the wake of this event, there has been an interest by key stakeholders in governments, academic institutions, civil societies, and donor agencies to follow up and invest in building the resiliency of the health systems of the region, particularly for the most vulnerable communities. The World Bank, the World Health Organization, and a number of regional donors including the Gates Foundation, the HK Jockey Club Charities and the China Medical Board have all been exploring ways to help the most vulnerable countries improve the capabilities of these health systems, to prepare for future shocks, and to effectively respond and capable to adapt and transform, in order to reduce the inequities historically present in the region.

We propose to convene a forum of stakeholders in the region who have a vested interest in improving the resilience of the health systems of the region with a focus on Cambodia and other low-resource countries. It will be a venue to exchange lessons across countries on their capabilities to prepare for and reduce disruptions, i.e. to absorb, adapt and transform, in an extreme event such as the pandemic, economic or natural disasters. The forum will also discuss opportunities for actions to improve health systems resilience, focusing on specific needs in the most vulnerable countries of the region. Through a deliberation of ASEAN partner countries, International donors, the World Bank, WHO, and philanthropies such as BMGF, Jockey Club, CMB, and selected health academics and practitioners, we hope to identify concrete interventions and best practices to be implemented for this purpose. Specific emphasis will be on human resources and leadership capacity and the use of data and health information systems for policies and systems governance.

1. To identify priorities and recommendations for strengthening health system resilience in the ASEAN region with a focus on Cambodia and other low-resource countries

2. To explore opportunities for collaboration among ASEAN member states, regional organizations, and international partners to address the gaps and needs of low-resource countries

3. To facilitate the establishment of networks and partnerships to advance knowledge sharing, technical support, and resource mobilization for data and human capacity development for health systems resilience and preparedness in Cambodia and other low-resource countries