South African eHealth developer, LifeQube, is working with OneFamily Health to roll out their interoperable MobiQube mHealth platform across low-resource franchisee owned primary healthcare clinics in Rwanda.
Through a PPP agreement with the Rwandan government, OneFamily Health is constructing 500 paperless primary healthcare clinics – or health posts – to serve the country’s population through the National Health Insurance (NHI) service.
When the project launched in May 2011 the MobiQube platform was implemented in five health posts. Although the platform is intuitive, CIO Systems Research and Development at LifeQube, Nick Danowski, explained that there were still issues that had to be overcome.
“Some of the initial challenges we faced had to do with miscommunication between the trainers of the English-based platform and the French speaking healthcare workers who weren’t computer literate. And like in many areas of South Africa, in Rwanda there’s also a lack of ICT and telecommunications infrastructure,” said Danowski.
Despite the initial hurdles, Danowski and his team adapted the system to the local setting, including releasing the platform in French. “The simple menu-driven interface of MobiQube follows a specific workflow which closely emulates the workflow in the health post, making it easy for the franchisee to understand,” said Danowski.
“Since its inception there has been a drastic reduction in data capturing errors – as is the case with free-text – that has led to the capturing of useful, structured data sets,” continued Danowski.
Danowski explained that the data sets currently being collected by the platform are being used to develop reliable business intelligence to monitor stock usage and prevent stock outs of crucial medicine; disease incidences; and profitability of the franchisees.
“The data is also being used to ensure that all available modules are utilised effectively by the franchisee and that continual training and re-enforcement on the platform as a whole is achieved,” said Danowski.
To date, MobiQube has rolled out to over 90 health posts across Rwanda, with further plans to roll out to 60 more by the end of 2015.
“This places enormous focus on the Management Portal and the ability to extract pertinent information about how clinics are run, especially when it comes to submitting claims,” said Danowski.
While claims are generated and extracted electronically by the platform, due to Rwandan government requirements they are still submitted via paper to local health districts and Mutuelle Sections. “LifeQube is working with OneFamily Health to change this and assist with the development of electronic claims submissions,” concluded Danowski.
Due to the success of MobiQube in Africa, LifeQube plans to pilot the platform in Haiti in the first quarter of 2015.