Zimbabwe, AMREF, Southern Africa RCC partner to boost telehealth services access

ZIMBWABWE – Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Health and Child Care has partnered with African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) Health Africa and the Africa Centres for Disease Control Southern Africa Regional Collaboration Centre to enhance telehealth experiences for patients and doctors.

Under the partnership, the Ministry received 130 tablets that will be used in the management of data within COVID-19 vaccination centres to enhance real time data collection at entry points, vaccination sites along with verification and validation of vaccination certificates.

The donation will support Zimbabwe’s COVID-19 response and management as part of the ‘Saving lives and livelihoods’ programme supporting Africa CDC member states particularly data management within vaccination centres through risk communication, community engagement and pathogen genomics.

The donation of tablets will further help the government to enhance national security to safeguard against unwarranted access to health-related data as well as aid in technical training and capacity building for health care workers and maintenance of the devices.

In addition, the digital equipment will enhance the Ministry of Health and Child Care’s digital access capacity and efficiency on the ongoing COVID-19 vaccination campaign as Zimbabwe has signaled its intention to embrace digital solutions and interventions in the provision of health services.

The Government also plans to introduce COVID-19 self-testing especially at ports of entry and in remote areas as part of continuous, thorough and effective response to the global pandemic to curb the spread of COVID-19.

Additionally, the devices will support Zimbabwe’s ongoing plans to set up telemedicine capabilities for multi-parametric telemonitoring of COVID-19 patient management through the setting up of virtual hospitals as part of efforts to embrace digital solutions.

For our COVID-19 response we have had the opportunity to collaborate with healthcare stakeholders to develop and implement new solutions that are helping to deal with and adapt to the pandemic,” Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health Dr Munyaradzi Dobbie stated.

Dr Munyaradzi Dobbie emphasized that partnerships are crucial in accelerating the rollout and usage of electronic systems, adoption of International Standards for interoperability along with the shift to a harmonized procurement of hardware that can run multiple systems.

Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health Dr Munyaradzi Dobbie further stressed that partnership will greatly contribute to the change in digital health management from paper to electronic systems and investment in power back-up and internet connectivity at health facilities.

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