The Emerging Health Tech Hub in Nigeria Part 3 (eHealth Africa)

 

The silver linings that accompany a healthcare system that is in dire need of restoration in an age of vigorous technological advancements, are the unmatched opportunities to create new and innovative medical and surgical systems, apps, devices and tools that could ease and facilitate access to safe, affordable, and effective healthcare services. Data collated by the World Health Organisation has demonstrated that locally generated innovations accelerate better health outcomes and reduce inequities; first hand knowledge of the primary needs of communities leads to the development of innovations and initiatives that are on-demand and relevant for the healthcare practitioners and patients alike.

Necessity is the mother of invention; the need to create Nigeria’s past and current struggles to manage and respond to public health emergencies such as the Ebola virus outbreak between 2014 and 2016, COVID-19 and ongoing efforts to eradicate malaria, typhoid and so on, have served as reminders of the need to be rid of the old, and in with the new- new ways of collating data, mapping outbreaks, managing health infrastructure and logistics, and educating communities on preventive and control measures.

eHealth Africa is a company that is carrying out the drudgery of developing and utilising tangible and effective technology that is catered for the Nigerian terrain. This Kano-based organisation has developed and executed projects, portals and systems that are based on field data and real life experiences of end users, be it patients, healthcare professionals or the government. They have generated over 900 detailed maps using a map composer on a data portal. This interactive and intuitive map portal is useful for research, planning and monitoring disease outbreaks and health intervention within Nigeria. The map works across 33 datasets and 12 sectors such as commerce, agriculture, education, energy, water and sanitation, etc, therefore it can utilised to execute any other social impact project.

Read also: Obaseki earmarks N14.1bn for healthcare in 2022

Here are a few of the projects that they have embarked on to assist the government in managing the COVID-19 pandemic:

Interactive Voice Response System (VRS)
eHealth Africa worked closely with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) surveillance team to develop an automated VRS which enabled public health workers to monitor track screen and report COVID-19 cases of inbound travelers following the opening of Nigerian airports during the pandemic. This system automatically calls thousands of Person of Interest (POIs) daily to verify if they are symptomatic by asking a series of questions to monitor for the most common symptoms of COVID-19. The VRS also calls asymptomatic contacts automatically from a call list daily for 14 days. It detects unresponsive phones and automatically redial until successful. All data collected is available in real-time on a reporting dashboard. In 2020, 82,549 calls were made, 2,360 cases were flagged and 1,238 hours or 51.5 days were saved.

Kano State Emergency Call Centre
eHealth Africa set up and supported the management of a call center in Kano state to increase the state’s capacity to receive and report escalated COVID-19 cases. The toll-free hot-line and call centre received 29,984 calls in 2020 and registered 6,065 cases.

LoMIS Stock- Inventory Management
In 2014, eHealth Africa (eHA) built LoMIS Stock and LoMIS Deliver, a suite of mobile and web applications to address the supply chain challenges. LoMIS Stock enables the bypassing of traditional (slow) paper-based reporting systems and submitting reports instantly using a mobile app. LoMIS Stock provides near real-time visibility of stock level at health facilities for planning and decision making. This suite was adopted by the NCDC to manage electronic inventories and health commodities during the pandemic. It provides data on commodities donated by partners to NCDC’s national stockpile and provides visibility through an electronic monitoring dashboard.
In 2020, 5,126,338 vaccines and 1,393,953 immunisations were delivered in Sokoto and Zamfara state via their Vaccine Direct Deliver (VDD) service through the LoMIS App. The scope of the projects that eHealth Africa transcends multiple disease areas and sectors.

In collaboration with the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, the Ministry Of Health, and the Ministry of Agriculture And Rural Development, eHealth Africa is conducting the National Food Consumption Micronutrients Survey (NFCMS). The goal of the project is to ‘assess
the current micronutrient status and dietary consumption patterns of key population groups. It has several key components: biomarker/anthropometry, dietary consumption, household socio-economic, household linelisting, and community sensitization’. With eHealth Africa’s field logistics planning and monitoring software tool, PlanFeld, up-to-date maps are generated for real-time field monitoring and effective allocation of resources; this software generates custom dashboards for data generation. In 2020, 400 people were trained to use the data collection tool and 390 enumeration area maps were generated.

Please visit https://www.ehealthafrica.org/ to read up on the plethora of past, current and future projects that eHealth Africa has embarked on.

  The silver linings that accompany a healthcare system that is in dire need of restoration in an age of vigorous technological advancements, are the unmatched opportunities to create new and innovative medical and surgical systems, apps, devices and tools that could ease and facilitate access to safe, affordable, and effective healthcare services. Data collated by the World Health Organisation has demonstrated that locally generated innovations accelerate better health outcomes and reduce inequities; first hand knowledge of the primary needs of communities leads to the development of innovations and initiatives that are on-demand and relevant for the healthcare practitioners and patients alike. Necessity is the mother of invention; the need to create Nigeria’s past and current struggles to manage and respond to public health emergencies such as the Ebola virus outbreak between 2014 and 2016, COVID-19 and ongoing efforts to eradicate malaria, typhoid and so on, have served as reminders of the need to be rid of the old, and in with the new- new ways of collating data, mapping outbreaks, managing health infrastructure and logistics, and educating communities on preventive and control measures. eHealth Africa is a company that is carrying out the drudgery of developing and utilising tangible and effective technology that is catered for the Nigerian terrain. This Kano-based organisation has developed and executed projects, portals and systems that are based on field data and real life experiences of end users, be it patients, healthcare professionals or the government. They have generated over 900 detailed maps using a map composer on a data portal. This interactive and intuitive map portal is useful for research, planning and monitoring disease outbreaks and health intervention within Nigeria. The map works across 33 datasets and 12 sectors such as commerce, agriculture, education, energy, water and sanitation, etc, therefore it can utilised to execute any other social impact project. Read also: Obaseki earmarks N14.1bn for healthcare in 2022 Here are a few of the projects that they have embarked on to assist the government in managing the COVID-19 pandemic: Interactive Voice Response System (VRS) eHealth Africa worked closely with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) surveillance team to develop an automated VRS which enabled public health workers to monitor track screen and report COVID-19 cases of inbound travelers following the opening of Nigerian airports during the pandemic. This system automatically calls thousands of Person of Interest (POIs) daily to verify if they are symptomatic by asking a series of questions to monitor for the most common symptoms of COVID-19. The VRS also calls asymptomatic contacts automatically from a call list daily for 14 days. It detects unresponsive phones and au...


  The silver linings that accompany a healthcare system that is in dire need of restoration in an age of vigorous technological advancements, are the unmatched opportunities to create new and innovative medical and surgical systems, apps, devices and tools that could ease and facilitate access to safe, affordable, and effective healthcare services. Data collated by the World Health Organisation has demonstrated that locally generated innovations accelerate better health outcomes and reduce inequities; first hand knowledge of the primary needs of communities leads to the development...


  The silver linings that accompany a healthcare system that is in dire need of restoration in an age of vigorous technological advancements, are the unmatched opportunities to create new and innovative medical and surgical systems, apps, devices and tools that could ease and facilitate access to safe, affordable, and effective healthcare services. Data collated by the World Health Org...


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