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Role of ICT for Health

Role of ICT for Health

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Published by Dejen Agaziu

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Published by: Dejen Agaziu on Jun 05, 2013
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 Improved

health and poverty reduction go hand in hand, not least since good health is a prerequisite for better living conditions. Hence, three out of eight Millennium Development Goals are related to health issues. There is an urgent need to improve child and maternal health, and combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases.

ICT can extend health education, transfer advice on treatment, and bring help where health personnel are out of reach. Smart combinations of ICT can be used to improve planning and delivery of health services  As well as awareness raising and preventive measures, not least through edutainment efforts that combined different media and communication technologies in innovative ways. All in all, both the health sector at large as well as individual citizens can benefit from improved information and communication, thus strengthening the right to development through better health.

 Increasing

quality of care and efficiency.  Reducing operating costs of clinical services.  Reducing administrative costs.  Enabling entirely new modes of care.  Reducing an unhealthy distance  Improving the information and communication technology infrastructure in the health sector

 Improve

access to and management of health information.  Improve access to quality health services.  Improve ICT knowledge, capability and utilization among health workers


 Nichols:

Healthcare is an information intensive industry.  professionals rely on access to correct and comprehensive information, when and where they need it, to inform the daily decisions they make about a person’s care.

 Information

and communications technology is largely absent from the way we generate, capture and share health information as we continue our reliance on handwritten paper records. To say that this reliance on paper is inefficient, wastes money and scarce resources and compromises patient safety and the quality of care is an understatement (Nichols, 2008).

According to WHO, the use of ICTs in health is not merely about technology (Dzenowagis, 2005)but a means to reach a series of desired outcomes:  health workers making better treatment decisions  hospitals providing higher quality and safer care  people making informed choices about their own health  governments becoming more responsive to health needs

 national

and local information systems supporting the development of effective, efficient and equitable health systems  policy makers and the public aware of health risks  People having better access to the information and knowledge they need for better health.


 The

African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) are improving its clinical outreach program  The primary goal is to improve the quality of and access to specialist care.mer with the help of telemedicine  The secondary goal is to improve care through training using tele-consultation and CME courses (AMREF, 2009).

 An

AMREF clinician and consultant physicians consult on specific cases. Clinical staff from the rural hospital use email to forward the case notes and supporting images of the patients to be ‘seen’ the following day. Notes may be scanned images of handwritten notes or PCbased using proprietary software.

AJEET MATHUR: IT’S ROLE IN DESIGN OF HEALTHCARE PRODUCTS AND SERVICES. IT has created opportunities for optimizing linkages between domestic markets and exports/imports which is reflected in the design of healthcare products and services.  The notion of `Telemedicine’ thus emerged as the practice of using audio, visual and data communications for medical consultations, diagnosis, treatment, nursing care, medical education and transfer of medical data together with a broader concept of `TeleHealth’ which includes Telemedicine and healthcare management,



in Health care delivery system: a Framework for developing nations  The aim of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) for Health (also known as eHealth) is to improve significantly the quality, access and efficacy of healthcare for all citizens.

 This

paper aims to discuss how ICT has contributed of health in different part of the world, its cost effectiveness and provide a framework for implementation in developing countries with evidences to why developing nations must embrace the opportunity and benefits of ICT in their health sector reform (A. Omotosho, 2012).

 Impact

of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) on Health Care  The most important are accessibility to health care services by citizens, economical aspect and quality of care aspect. The main goal is to provide access for the citizen at any time and in any place. eHealth can certainly provide such an access especially in the regions where physician may not be available.

 EHealth

can decrease the costs of health care by decentralizing the care – enabling medical services at a lower level where they are cheaper  e.g. regional hospital instead of university hospital, or by avoiding patient transport to the hospital when it is not necessary (Robert Rudowski.

 Telemedicine

- use of medical information exchanged from one site to another via electronic communications to improve patients' health status. (ATA)  Telehealth – use of information and communication and technologies to deliver health services and transmit health information over both long and short distances. It’s about transmitting voice, data, images, and information rather than moving patients or healthcare practitioners and educators. (CST)

 E-Health-

EHealth is a relatively new term in health care practice and one of the most rapidly growing areas in health and ICT today. The World Health Organization defines eHealth as „the cost-effective and secure use of information and communications technologies (ICT) in support of health and health- related fields, including health-care services, health surveillance, health literature , and health education, knowledge and research‟.(WHO 2005).

 Ehealth

is the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) for health” (WHO, 2008).  Telenursing - is the practice of nursing over distance using telecommunication technology.

 The

growth of the Internet and ICT technologies had a large impact on modern healthcare. A fundamental need is to design novel electronic healthcare services that improve people’s health and wellbeing but also extend beyond the individual towards sustainability of our society.

 Although

the use of ICT in healthcare can offer several benefits to the society, the adoption of electronic healthcare services relies also on ethical and societal aspects such as the trust that end-users (e.g., patients and physicians) has towards such services.  There are three main areas in which ICT can help to make healthcare more effective and efficient. These are :

management of healthcare  medical treatment  prevention.  The decreasing cost and size of sensors, monitors and other equipment enables both novel uses for existing technologies and applications of completely new technologies.


ICT diffusion index can be calculated from the formula:  ICT diffusion = (Connectivity + Access+ Policy) /3  ICT diffusion takes on values from 0 to 1 range (eg. Iceland has the highest ICT diff in Europe = 0,76);  Low ICT diffusion value for a given country indicates obstacles in eHealth development. Better telecommunications infrastructure, more reliable and user friendly access devices are of a high priority in developing countries.

A. Omotosho, ict in health care delivery system: a framework for developing nations, O. E. (2012).  Ajeet Mathur, IT’s role in design of healthcare products and services, S. 2. (September 2003).  AMREF, using telemedicine to improve rural health, (2009).  Dzenowagis. (2005).  Nichols, P. e. (2008).  Robert Rudowski, D. o. (n.d.), Impact of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) on Health Care

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