Dr Chow Chun-bong
MBBS (HK), FHKAM(Paed), FHKPaed, FRCPCH, FRCP (Lond, Edin, Glasg), DCH (Lond)
Hon. Clinical Professor, Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine and Department of Community Medicine, The School of Public Health, The University of Hong Kong
Honorary Consultant, Hospital Authority Infectious Disease Centre and Paediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, Princess Margaret Hospital
Dr CB Chow is Honorary Clinical Professor of the Department of Paediatrics and Department of Community Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Adjunct Associate Professor of the Department of Paediatrics, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. He is also Honorary Consultant of the Hospital Authority Infectious Disease Centre (HAIDC) at Princess Margaret Hospital and Honorary Consultant Paediatrician at Princess Margaret Hospital. He is the Founding President of The Hong Kong Society of Neonatal Medicine and Inborn Error of Metabolism. He serves on various boards in the community including Chairman of the Scientific Committee on Vaccine Preventable Diseases and Working Group on Injury Prevention, Task force on code on breast milk substitute, Department of Health. Dr Chow is also Chairman of Hong Kong Committee on Children’s Right, Playright Children’s Play Association, Hong Kong Childhood Injury Prevention and Research, Hong Kong Early Childhood Development Foundation; Board member for Against Child Abuse and Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative Hong Kong Association for over 10 years. He has been strong advocate for children’s rights in Hong Kong especially right for protection and safety, right for play, right for quality and integrated education for decades. He is also Director of Kwai Tsing and Tsuen Wan Safe Community and Healthy City Associations and has been involved in community safety and health promotion at community level. He also pioneered the Comprehensive Child Development Service for high risk pregnancies in Kowloon West Cluster and started a QK Blog project for high risk secondary school students in Kwai Tsing District.
Dr Chow has authored over 150 original articles, abstracts and chapters in books on paediatrics and infectious diseases. He has actively promoted various research works including childhood injury surveillance and intervention, adolescent health, early child development and child abuse, obesity and physical activity; intra-uterine growth in Chinese infants, physical health status of new immigrant children from mainland China, growth parameters in Down syndrome children; safe community and healthy city, child policy and play.
Comprehensive and reliable data collection system on children, from and by children, for children
A cornerstone of human rights law is accountability, or in its simplest terms, the ability to make certain that those charged with protecting and fulfilling the child rights actually do what they are supposed to do, and if they do not or cannot, that children and their representatives have some recourse. (UNICEF Accountability for children’s rights 2015) Timely, reliable, relevant and accessible information is critical for accountability.
The Commission on Information and Accountability for Women’s and Children’s Health in 2012 has made 10 recommendations on the development of an accountability framework to effect 1) monitor - better information for better results 2) review - better tracking of resources for women’s and children’s health and better oversight of results and resources 3) act - on results of the review aiming at learning and continuous improvement. The framework links accountability for resources to the results, outcomes and impacts they produce.
One basic underpinning principles of right-based approach is inequities must be embedded in all development and we must commit to rights of every child. Government, community and family will have collective duty to our children in both public and private realms. Data collected must not just be national average but also in drawing attention to those who have been left behind, not just vital statistics but also on circumstances under which children are living and their perception or opinion. Children are not a homogenous group and data must be disaggregated and be mapped to locations where administrative accountability can be established.
As stipulated in the General Comment 5 on Implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (2003) that “collection of sufficient and reliable data on children, disaggregated to enable identification of discrimination and/or disparities in the realization of rights, is an essential part of implementation…” While Hong Kong does collect lots of data, but as in the Concluding Observation by UNCRC in 2013, there is a lack of comprehensive and reliable data collection system in Hong Kong and Hong Kong should “centralized data collection system be established to collect independently verifiable data on children and to analyse the data collected as a basis for assessing progress achieved in the realization of child rights and for designing policies and programmes to implement the UNCRC.
The data should be disaggregated by age, sex, geographic location, ethnicity and socio-economic background to facilitate analysis of the situation of all children,..” With rapid advances in innovative information and communication technology, this need to be capitalized to produce real-time, integrated information for empowering children and their representatives by improving literacy on rights and increasing their voices in public affairs and for monitoring actions and impacts of duty bearers.