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4th Congress of the Northern Network for Medical Humanities Research

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Event date: Wednesday, 21 April 2021 12:00 am - Friday, 23 April 2021 12:00 am

The fourth Northern Network for Medical Humanities Research (NNMHR) Congress will be held online on 21–23 April 2021, in collaboration with the Institute for Medical Humanities, Durham. The aim of the Congress is simple: it is an opportunity for people who are passionate or even simply curious about medical humanities research to present their work, share ideas, and meet potential future colleagues and collaborators.

During this Congress, Dr. Marietjie Botes from IRiSC research group at SnT will speak on 21 April at 15:30 at the Leaving no one behind: Digital rights as human rights workshop.

COVID-19 forced everyone to start using digital platforms to become portholes to people’s healthcare, economic, educational, and social livelihoods. However, digital technologies are not equally accessible, resulting in disadvantaged people giving up on these technologies. Some people were unprepared for an exclusive digital world and lack access to the internet, data, or technical skills to navigate digital platforms, making them vulnerable through their inability to access health-related information, news, or social support. Digitalisation reinforced existing inequalities by having disadvantaged people falling off the digital grid with serious impacts on their physical, mental, and social health. Digital rights are embedded in socio-economic human rights and are it only through the realisation of these human rights that universal access policies’ goals will be attainable. Electricity, employment, and literacy are prerequisites to connect to a digital domain but job losses and illness due to COVID-19 resulted in disadvantaged people having no financial means to prioritise accessing information digitally, and making these people disappear into a void of disconnectedness and oblivion. Realising human rights will make digital rights possible, which requires the urgent attention of governments to ensure that no one is left behind.

 

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