Improving Service Delivery through Reliable Communication

Feb 13, 2014

A rural health facility in Manicaland Central with VSAT powered by solar panel.

Working in close collaboration with the MoHCC, the Global Fund programme administered by UNDP has finalized the plans for installation of two fixed internet technologies in 82 health facilities nationwide, paving the way for better communications and timely reporting.

This development will go a long way in supporting the new ePMS, DHIS-2 and other systems being developed to strengthen the health information system.

By December 2013, installation of almost 97% of VSAT sites and 80% of fibre optic sites had been completed. The last phase of this activity will be completed in the first quarter of 2014.

In addition, where fixed internet is currently unavailable, Global Fund provided the MoHCC with 160 dongles and air-time to admitting hospitals. This helps in the strengthening In-patient Morbidity and Mortality Information System (IMMIS). The IMMIS refers to a reporting system whereby all admitting hospitals capture and report date on admitted patients. This system is useful in calculating disease burden, types of diseases and causes of morbidity and mortality among others.

According to the MoHCC, the old IMMIS program is being replaced by a new windows version which has been linked to the District Health Information Software (DHIS-2) .

Meanwhile UNDP/Global Fund continued to support the Weekly Disease Surveillance System (WDSS) by paying monthly air-time for all cell phones being used for this purpose.

Following the introduction of the use of cell phones in 2011, completeness of weekly disease surveillance system reports has greatly improved. It increased  from under 50%, in 2010, to above 90% in 2013.

In 2014, additional 450 cell phones will be procured for the WDSS, ensuring 100% coverage of all health facilities in the country with cell phone facilities.

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