ICT, Health

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ICT, Health

  1. 1. ICT + HEALTH IN ETHIOPIA NATIONAL WORKSHOP 9-10 March 2006 UNECA, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia ICT, Health & AISI Aida Opoku-Mensah OIC, DISD
  2. 2. Background <ul><li>The African Information Society Initiative (AISI) </li></ul><ul><li>a vision for ICT development in Africa </li></ul><ul><li>an implementation process, with evaluation of results & impact (Policy) </li></ul><ul><li>series of sector applications defined according to Africa’s priorities (Info+Know) </li></ul><ul><li>a tool where synergies are created through open partnerships </li></ul>
  3. 3. African Information Society Initiative (AISI) <ul><li>launched in 1996 by the African Ministers in charge of planning and economic development </li></ul><ul><li>endorsed by the African Regional Telecommunications for Development Conference held in Abidjan in 1996 </li></ul><ul><li>endorsed by the 1996 OAU (now AU) Summit </li></ul><ul><li>welcomed during the G7+1 Denver Summit in 1997 </li></ul>
  4. 4. AISI Activities (1/3) <ul><li>Policy – assisting countries to develop national e-strategies and raise awareness among policy makers (including parliamentarians) on issues related to ICT4D </li></ul><ul><li>Information and knowledge – building capacity of member States to develop and use information for development </li></ul>
  5. 5. AISI Activities (2/3) <ul><li>Outreach activities – information dissemination on ICT4D activities –involvement of Women’s groups/CSOs, Media, Academia, MPs, etc </li></ul><ul><li>Partnership and networking – joint ICT programs with development and funding agencies working in Africa and voicing Africa’s position in global fora like WSIS </li></ul>
  6. 6. AISI Activities (3/3) <ul><li>Regional ICT initiatives </li></ul><ul><ul><li>- African Union - WSIS </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>NEPAD ICT cluster </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Regional Economic Communities (RECs) </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. AISI+ Health (1/3) <ul><li>… for ICTs to assist in improving healthcare delivery in Africa, and for addressing the issue in a comprehensive manner, countries need to develop and implement national e-health strategies </li></ul>
  8. 8. AISI+ Health (2/3) <ul><li>The main challenges for Africa are : </li></ul><ul><li>Epidemics, spread of infectious diseases, AIDS </li></ul><ul><li>Highest infant and maternal mortality rate in the world </li></ul><ul><li>Lowest levels of life expectancy in the world </li></ul><ul><li>Lowest world ratio of doctors per capita. </li></ul><ul><li>The opportunities include : </li></ul><ul><li>Enhancement of health administration and management through medical information systems </li></ul><ul><li>Establishment of information “health profiles” and decision-support systems on regional, national, rural and district levels </li></ul><ul><li>Linking health centres, delivery services and medical transport to patients </li></ul><ul><li>Improving access to skilled diagnosis through tele-medicine </li></ul><ul><li>Improving distribution and reducing costs of medical supplies </li></ul>
  9. 9. AISI+ Health (3/3) <ul><li>Health care objective: Achieve more efficient and </li></ul><ul><li>affordable health care </li></ul><ul><li>Beneficiaries: society, health care providers </li></ul><ul><li>Goals: </li></ul><ul><li>Establish and maintain databases on public and private medical centres, physicians and health care providers </li></ul><ul><li>Provide on-line access to national and international medical databases and expertise (telemedicine) </li></ul><ul><li>Link health administration for improving distribution of drugs and medical supplies </li></ul><ul><li>Link health care systems with centres for disease control for early warnings of plagues and infectious diseases </li></ul><ul><li>Link health care systems with insurance companies, medical practitioners, and the public </li></ul>
  10. 10. AISI+MDGs <ul><li>AISI + Health addresses MDGs: </li></ul><ul><li>4. r educe child mortality </li></ul><ul><li>5. improve maternal health </li></ul><ul><li>6. c ombat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases </li></ul>
  11. 11. Impact of ICTs on Health (1/4) <ul><li>ICT revolution + medical technology = transformed health systems and services worldwide </li></ul><ul><li>Tremendous promise for services, health administration, finance, education, research and health-related markets </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Technological developments - wireless and satellite systems, broadband communications, better access to services and increasing digital processing power and storage capacity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Health an information-intensive sector and transforming health information systems to knowledge-based systems (According to WHO, 40% of health is exchanging information!) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New opportunities for mobility of patients and trade in health (services) </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Impact of ICTs on the Health Sector – Africa (2/4) <ul><li>Medical information systems (administration and management): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Health profiles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Access to diagnosis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Effective medical planning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Health education and training </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Drug supply and inventory tracking ( epidemics & contagious diseases) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Treatment procedures and protocols </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Health care resource tracking and support in remote areas </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Impact of ICTs on the Health Sector– Africa (3/3) <ul><li>ICT in Health Research and Development </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Networks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Applications </li></ul></ul><ul><li>ICT in Health Education </li></ul><ul><li>Public/Community health information systems </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Telecenters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Community Health Information Systems (CHIS) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Telemedicine systems </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Remote clinical diagnosis and advice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interconnections of users in the field, local clinics, regional health facilities and national hospitals, and the linkage with key international institutions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Disease-related centers of excellence – crucial to Africa considering the HR problem in medicine </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. ICTs and Health – Best Practices in Africa (1/7) <ul><li>Handheld computers (PDAs) for: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Diagnosis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Medical reference </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Billing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Patient management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Drug dosage calculations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Disease surveys </li></ul></ul>Handhelds in Health
  15. 15. <ul><li>PDA projects in Uganda, Kenya </li></ul><ul><li>Uganda : t est use and usefulness by medical practitioners to </li></ul><ul><ul><li>conduct an epidemiological survey on malaria </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>use medical reference tools and texts in their daily medical practice </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Kenya : t est use and usefulness of PDAs by students to </li></ul><ul><ul><li>collect field survey information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>use medical reference tools and texts as part of their studies </li></ul></ul>ICTs and Health – Best Practices in Africa/PDAs (2/7) Handhelds in Health
  16. 16. <ul><li>Key findings: </li></ul><ul><li>P roved to be useful and viable technology in Uganda and Kenya </li></ul><ul><li>Effective tool for collection of health data and information dissemination </li></ul><ul><li>M edical reference materials available on the PDA helped improve the provision of healthcare </li></ul><ul><li>A ppropriate technology for use in the African context </li></ul><ul><li>I nexpensive alternative to PCs in terms of computer power per dollar </li></ul><ul><li>S imple to use, easily integrated into the daily routines of the healthcare professionals </li></ul>ICTs and Health – Best Practices in Africa/PDA Findings (3/7) Handhelds in Health
  17. 17. <ul><li>Key lessons: </li></ul><ul><li>Training is needed for users and p roject managers </li></ul><ul><li>PDA use changes the way that survey s should be designed and conducted </li></ul><ul><li>Technical support is critical </li></ul><ul><li>Content must be locally relevant </li></ul><ul><li>Power supply must be appropriate to the situation: battery-powered units would only be the first choice in situations where a ready electricity supply is unavailable </li></ul><ul><li>Synchronizing onto a central data system must be simple and convenient </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Video clip on PDA use in Uganda >> </li></ul></ul>ICTs and Health – Best Practices in Africa/PDA Lessons (4/7) Handhelds in Health
  18. 18. ICTs and Health – Best Practices in Africa (5/7) <ul><li>Telemedicine </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mali – Kènèya Blown project (the pilot telemedicine project seeks to provide an online network for all hospitals and health districts in Mali </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mozambique - probably one of the first telemedicine link in Africa in 1999 -between the central hospitals of Beira and Maputo </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Uganda - The service includes exchange of data, audio consultation, and showing of diagnostic images led by Telemedicine National Steering Committee </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. ICTs and Health – Best Practices in Africa (6/7) <ul><li>Ghana - Stimulating Local Digital Health Content by using video </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The health information (on breastfeeding) was developed by the local communities themselves in local languages and presented to five communities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Survey confirmed that the use of local languages to deliver health messages has tremendous impact when sound and image is combined. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More than 350 people from five communities benefited from the education, 800 mothers were targeted </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Success in the sense of being pioneering in producing local content with the assistance of participating communities. </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. ICTs and Health – Best Practices in Africa (7/7) <ul><li>Ghana - CHIM (Community Health Information Management) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Data collecting system at district level </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tool for decision making in the Ministry and government </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complimentarity with the EU GIS project EMMSDAG ( Establishing a Mapping and Monitoring System for Development Activities) </li></ul></ul>
  21. 21. ICT in Health Sector Reforms (1/2) <ul><li>Benefits </li></ul><ul><li>Facilitates decentralisation efforts linking national medical centers to district health facilities in other cities, towns and rural/remote access </li></ul><ul><li>Standardise data collection (access/retrieval) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Enable patient information to be stored where in some cases hospitals in Africa have manual records dating back 40 years. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Enable quick sharing of information and catching epidemics contagious diseases at early stages </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. ICT in Health Sector Reforms (2/2) <ul><li>Benefits </li></ul><ul><li>Collection of accurate health statistics for health workers, governments and donors who rely on such information to allocate resources during and after sector reforms </li></ul><ul><li>Access to consistent and reliable health information allow health workers to access real time data, leading to better prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore Health Sector Strategic Plans in Africa could make use of ICT as a tool for rollout </li></ul>
  23. 23. National e-Health policies and strategies <ul><li>Rationale </li></ul><ul><li>Strategies and policies to support effective and equitable e-health systems </li></ul><ul><li>Facilitate collaborative approach to e-health development in addressing common areas of concern and collaboration with other sectors in ICT policy, standards, and technical and infrastructure development </li></ul><ul><li>Monitor internationally-accepted goals and targets for e-health </li></ul><ul><li>Strengthen ICT in health education and training in countries </li></ul><ul><li>Important that ICTs used to maximise the use of scarce health resources rather than divert resources from basic health needs of countries </li></ul>
  24. 24. Role of ECA in e-Health Strategies + Policies <ul><li>Technical assistance and capacity building - development of assessment methods, standards and tools to guide best use of ICT to improve access, quality and economy of health </li></ul><ul><li>Link technical assistance to facilitate health sector reforms </li></ul><ul><li>Strengthen Health Sector decentralisation efforts </li></ul>
  25. 25. Challenges/Considerations for e-Health Strategies and Policies (1/2) <ul><li>Ethical issues </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Maintaining confidentiality of information and the privacy of patients </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Safeguarding integrity of information systems present continuing challenge </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Legal issues emerging and many e-health applications currently unregulated, unlike other aspects of health systems </li></ul><ul><li>Legislation covering confidentiality, privacy, access and liability is necessary with the transfer of information across national borders. Conflicts between domestic and international law need to be resolved </li></ul>
  26. 26. Challenges/Considerations for e-Health Strategies and Policies (2/2) <ul><li>Capacity building essential for successful use of ICT in health systems where health personnel need skills and knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Policy makers need to shape ICT policies to promote equity, best practice, quality of care and data as well as safety. Other skill areas include legal, policy and technical </li></ul><ul><li>Awareness of convergence of information, technology, education and health for health knowledge in the right language for people </li></ul><ul><li>Infrastructure/infostructure – connectivity, content, applications to support e-Health initiatives </li></ul>
  27. 27. <ul><li>Support for e-Health strategies (Uganda) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Partnership – WHO on e-Health strategies </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Capacity building for policy makers (vLAC) (eg. workshop for medical practitioners (Aug 2004) – partnership with AAU, ETC, ITU in Telemedicine in Ethiopia </li></ul><ul><li>Research and innovation – eg. AAU VarsityNet project on health applications </li></ul><ul><li>Advocacy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>creating e-Health leaders/champions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Building e-Health stakeholdership (PPPs) </li></ul></ul>The way forward – Role of ECA
  28. 28. Thank You ! http://www.uneca.org/aisi/ [email_address]

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