The Ghana Health Service (GHS) in partnership with Simprints, and the Millenium Promise Alliance (MPA) has held a training programme on e-tracking for personnel in the government’s health management sector.
The two-day event gave health service workers insight into Simprint’s application with biometrics capability to kick start its implementation.
The trainees will be later sent to various departments to train more individuals on how to maximize the innovation.
Speaking at the opening ceremony on November 22, the Director-General GHS, Dr. Patrick Kuma-Aboagye underscored the advantages afforded the sector with the introduction of the innovation.
“I believe that this initiative in the long term will ensure unique patient records are created without risk of disease transmission among health workers and patients, reliable data on the number of individuals immunized which leads to more precise coverage rates and faster intervention, avoidance of duplicate records through biometric verification, which can prevent unnecessary double dosing (wasting precious supply), and creating important time and cost savings,” he said.
He further noted that “your presence here signifies your commitment to supporting the initiative which is paramount to the achievement of unique identities for our clients as we seek to address bottlenecks in the health interventions, specifically verifying delivery and patient tracking for course completion.”
Millennium Promise Alliance (MPA) also reiterated the need for technology to bridge the information deficit in Africa’s health sector.
According to MPA Country Director, Chief Nathaniel Ebo Nsarko, even though Ghana has made strides in the aspect which was accelerated at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, there remains more room for improvement.
He also promised his outfit’s support to integrate the development with existing health systems to make it aligned and tailor-made for the country’s health needs.
Frontline health workers spend 40% of their time on data management, according to an estimate by the policy, planning, monitoring and evaluation unit of GHS.
The GHS, therefore, as part of implementing the government’s policy on digitisation rolled out, as a pilot, the e-tracker solution for electronic surveillance of TB, HIV AIDS ART and Maternal and Child Health services (MCH) including antenatal care, postnatal care, delivery, and family planning.
Simprints’ Technical Project Manager, Jordan Silverman said the technology is pivotal to addressing data challenges that impede policymaking in the health sector.
The devices to be used in the process are portable with scanners and can work offline which means hard-to-reach areas of the country will not be left out.