Medical devices

Global initiative on health technologies

Health technologies have a critical role in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of illness and disease. Yet, access to health technology remains a challenge particularly in developing countries.

The Global Initiative on Health Technologies aims to help make available the benefits of health technologies, particularly to communities in resource-limited settings, in order to effectively control important health problems. The GIHT has two primary objectives.

Objective 1

To challenge the international community to establish a framework for the development of National Health Technology Programmes that will impact the burden of disease and ensure effective use of resources.


  • Development of guidelines for the formulation of National Health Technology Programmes;
  • Development of a methodology and relevant tools to help Member States to conduct an assessment of health technologies;
  • Identification of national, regional and global standards for countries to identify current gaps and future needs in order to prioritize health technologies;
  • Development of tools to assist countries to integrate the prioritized needs into national policies, action plans and programmes;
  • Development of supporting e-tools.


Objective 2

To challenge the business and scientific community to identify and adapt "innovative" technologies that can have a significant impact on public health.


  • Identify and collaborate with institutions and WHO Collaborating Centres;
  • Identification of key global health concerns, guided by the Global Burden of Disease and the Disability Adjusted Life Year;
  • Outreach/call to the business and scientific community;
  • Identification of the "Innovative Technologies".