health sector

HEALTH SECTOR

Overview

Despite an elaborate and extensive network of health infrastructure, the health care delivery system in Pakistan has failed to bring about improvement in health status especially of rural populations. The health system is characterized by inadequate expenditure, poor quality services and poor access to and utilization of services. Most of the surveys showed that utilization of Government health care services in Pakistan is low. The three most commonly cited reasons are, inaccessible facilities, lack of availability of medicines, and uncooperative staff. Only 33% of the rural population is in access of 5km. Additionally, Shortage of basic health care equipment at hospitals in Pakistan contributes significantly to neonatal deaths from preventable causes.

KEY STATISTICS

Hospital Beds (Per 10,000 Population): 20
Density Of Physicians (Per 10,000 Population): 7.8
Density Of Nurses And Midwives (Per 10,000 Population): 3.8

Recommendations:

  • Use technology to increase access
  • Invest in building low-cost local manufacturing of health equipment and products
  • Institute quality of care frameworks

Challenges:

  • Access to healthcare
  • Affordability of Healthcare
  • Quality of healthcare

Solutions From Around the World:

  • Jeeon’s Doctor-in-a-Tab is an innovative mobile healthcare application that serves rural patients in Bangladesh by providing local intermediaries with the training and equipment to facilitate meaningful consultations with remote doctors. Telemedicine projects usually connect patients directly to doctors through a voice call but doctors most often cannot take meaningful decisions without vital signs, patient history, drug history, etc. By making use of local intermediaries, Jeeon enables doctors to have a much richer interaction with patients, while optimizing the utilization of the doctor’s time. Also, by using existing local intermediaries and their existing infrastructure, it drastically reduces the marginal cost expansion, making this model highly scalable.
  • One of the most exciting areas for health innovation in Africa is mHealth. The term mHealth is defined as the use of “emerging mobile communications and network technologies for healthcare”. mHealth entails deploying mobile communication tools, not just limited to mobile phones but also personal digital assistants and patient monitoring devices, to improve access to healthcare support – whether in terms of medicine, medical care, health-related services or information.

 

  • Aviro Health (South Africa) is a design and technology company that develops digital applications for healthcare practitioners to improve the quality of medical treatment. Its product offerings include applications that help the administration of HIV/AIDS treatment, and e-learning and training platforms for medical practitioners (both physicians and nurses) in the form of e-books and videos. These applications are available to healthcare professionals in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, and Malawi. Aviro Health provides HIV/AIDS patients with real-time feedback and guidance to healthcare practitioners for reliable care. It provides information that is essential for HIV patient management that is often missed in routine examinations. The application enables nurses to treat each patient in less than 10 minute and can be used by any nurse in a primary care setting. This enables the nurse to determine a patient’s eligibility for ARV treatment, which drugs to use, and when to start treatment.  

Sources:

– www.jeeon.com
– Africa: Innovations in healthcare, Richard Walker, African Business, 14 July 2014
– Africa Is Becoming A Hub Of Medical Innovation, Africa Strictly Business