OECD/OCDE., 2010. The Role of Information and Communication Technologies. OECD Health Policy Studies: Improving Health Sector Efficiency. OECD. pp.27
Professor AzeemMajeed, August 23, 2010.Using information technology to improve patient safety
Source: Sean Blaschke, Technology for Development Specialist at UNICEF Uganda There are many eHealth projects courtesy of UNICEF, Malaria Consortium, Text to Change (a major partner of most projects) WHO, AIC, Marie Stopes etc. They are all geared towards addressing maternal, child and infant health problems, addressing HIV/AIDS challenges, malaria challenges, etc. However they are pilots. A test that has a project lifespan and end.
Understanding eHealth in Uganda
Nalwoga Clare Samba-2013
Definition:eHealth is short for ELECTRONIC HEALTHIn simple terms, the WHO defines eHealth as the application of ICT (Information and Communication Technology) in health care.In broad terms, eHealth has been defined as the use of ICTs, locally and at a distance, to strengthen health systems and address public health priorities (Commonwealth Secretariat, 2009.)
In summary: Health workers make better treatment decisions; Hospitals can provide higher quality and safer care; Governments become more responsive to health needs; Information systems support the development of effective, efficient, and equitable health systems; Policymakers and the public become more aware of health risks; Individuals have better access to the information and knowledge they need to make informed choices for their own better health.
Why have eHealth pilot projects failedto mature as programs in Uganda?NB: Not only in Uganda, but a number ofdeveloping countries.• The basics of eHealth have not been transferred to the eligible candidates through the traditional means: teach, educate, train and mentor.• eHealth is not a concept for only the IT and ICT personnel but the health professional, social scientists, the artists and the ordinary citizen.
How to support eHealth initiativesand sustain them for a long term Teach the basics of eHealth ( what is eHealth? The uses? The different tools…train, educate, mentor…) Early and active engagement of stakeholders (nurses, doctors, health workers, citizens… encourage them by showing what other countries are doing) Consideration of culture (e.g train female health workers on how to use phones to teach women on reproductive health) Link communities with IT support companies e.g. AIRTEL, UTL, WIFI companies through their respective Corporate Social Responsibility
References:• CENTRE FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT., 2001. eHealth in Developing Countries, The Future of Healthcare• Commonwealth Secretariat, 2009• Professor Majeed A., 2010. Using information technology to improve patient safety. http://medical-centre.blogspot.com/2010_08_01_archive.html• JEANNINE,L., 2011. Scaling up Mobile Health: Elements necessary for the successful Scale up of mHealth in Developing Countries. White Paper Commissioned by Advanced Development for Africa. pp 10• OECD/OCDE., 2010. The Role of Information and Communication Technologies. OECD Health Policy Studies: Improving Health Sector Efficiency. OECD. pp.27• Sean Blaschke, Technology for Development Specialist at UNICEF Uganda