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Faculty Publishes on Electronic and Mobile Health in Low Income Countries

  Oct 14, 2016

Dr. Pratap Kumar, Senior Researcher and Faculty from the Institute of Healthcare Management at Strathmore Business School published on the BMJ Journal, Achieves of Diseases in Childhood. The article written by Pratap Kumar, Chris Paton and Doris Kirigia; I’ve got 99 problems, but a phone ain’t one: Electronic and mobile health in low and middle income countries holds the journal’s cover, with the Editor in Chief acclaiming the quality of research exuded by the paper’s ability to capture Kenya’s growing electronic reach penetration.

Affirming this he stated, “Kumar et al report on two recent initiatives from Kenya where there are almost 38 million mobile phone subscriptions (population 44 million) and mobile phone subscriptions form 99% of all internet subscriptions. These initiatives bring down the costs of remote consultations and clinical audit and offer the potential for clinics in resource limited settings to deliver high quality care.”

Implementations of electronic health (e-Health) and mobile health (m-Health) technologies in countries like Kenya are yet to tackle human resource constraints and the political, ethical and financial considerations of such technologies. The article outlines recent innovations that could improve access and quality while considering the costs of healthcare.

Some of the recommended initiatives highlighted in the article include: an attempt to create a scalable clinical decision support system by engaging a global network of specialist doctors, reversing some of the damaging effects of medical brain drain; and efficiently extract digital information from paper-based records using low-cost and locally produced tools such as rubber stamps to improve adherence to clinical practice guidelines.

By bringing down the costs of remote consultations and clinical audit these projects offer the potential for clinics in resource-limited settings to deliver high-quality care. The paper makes a case for continued and increased investments in social enterprises that bridge academia, public and private sectors to deliver sustainable and scalable e-Health and m-Health solutions.

Story picked from excerpts of the article. Click here to read the full text.

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