According to the UNICEF, 135 million children under five years of age, are unregistered waiving their rights to education, water and sanitation, and all other provisions of the state. This could mean a number of problems in person’s legal identity, tracking birth and cause of death essential for planning, measuring and monitoring progress of development.
In the Asia-Pacific Civil Register’s Meeting held July 15-17, in Pattaya, Thailand, 30 countries joined the call to form a collaborative network to share and discuss issues that hamper birth and death registration and its implications to education, health care, social rights and protection.
Calamities, outdated law on registration, and engaging hard-to-reach and vulnerable populations are among the many hurdles to complete registration. These and other challenges were raised in the conference held at the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP).
Countries, recognizing the power of information communication and technology (ICT), presented innovative solutions to approach these in the Innovations Fair of the conference. 14 innovative ICT solutions to CRVS are showcased attempting to integrate disparate data systems for sharing across ministries. Thailand shared on how causes of death are identified by combining data from their civil registration and HIV prevalence showing potential for scale-up and seamless security protection across databases. Sri Lanka featured how two databases, managed by different departments in the ministry, are integrated through a common interface for universal access.
On November of this year, international civil society groups will again meet in a Ministerial Conference to talk on specific actions as indicated in the Regional Action Framework (RAF) to report an update on the “Asian and Pacific Civil Registration and Vital Statistics Decade” from 2015-2024.
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Dr Alvin Marcelo
Medical Informatics Unit
University of the Philippines Manila
547 Pedro Gil St., Ermita
Dr Boonchai Kijsanayotin
Health System Research Institute
National Health Building
88/39 Tiwanon 14 Road,
Ms Aliyah Lou Evangelista
National Telehealth Center
National Institutes of Health
University of the Philippines