A global digital health system for non-communicable diseases: advancing holistic outcomes and universal health coverage

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are the largest cause of mortality and premature deaths worldwide, killing 50 million people every year. NCDs can be controlled through awareness and preventative and curative interventions. Yet, there is no global solution that can identify individuals at risk and enable the effective and equitable scaling of evidenced treatments. This brief proposes policy actions for the G20 to facilitate the creation and adoption of a digital public health system for NCDs and proposes an open-source model that includes artificial intelligence-based screening, behavioural-change strategies, and evidenced preventative and curative treatment modalities. The policy brief discusses the potential of such a system in helping achieve target 3.4 of the Sustainable Development Goals of reducing premature mortality from NCDs by one-third through prevention, treatment, and the promotion of mental health and well-being by 2030. Such a digital health system could also be a step towards the global goal of universal health coverage.