Let’s take full advantage of tech and connectivity to advance healthcare


ICT plays an important role in supporting, enhancing, and accelerating the achievement of health targets. FILE PHOTO | SHUTTERSTOCK

Having access to a trusted medical opinion is a privilege taken for granted, but one that so many do not get to enjoy.

Beyond access, saving for healthcare emergencies is a tough ask for families, because they have to decide between saving for daily sustenance, school fees and other household needs or putting aside money for medical care.

These tough decisions impact mothers and children the most.

In Kenya, massive investments have been made in health infrastructural systems to support the sustainable functioning of healthcare services provided by the national and county governments.

Kenya has committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including SDG 3 on good health and well-being, reducing maternal mortality and ending the deaths of newborns and children under five years.

The government has also adopted universal health coverage (UHC) as part of its agenda.

The Kenyan Constitution provides a legal framework for the provision of a comprehensive rights-based approach to the delivery of health services.

It obligates every State organ to implement legislative, policy and other measures, including the setting of standards to progressively achieve the rights guaranteed in Article 43.

However, many may argue that this is still not enough, and we need to be more deliberate in our actions to achieve better results.

Kenya has adopted eHealth and mHealth solutions and if managed well, they are tools that can improve healthcare in Africa.

However, it is crucial to evaluate the capacity, relevant infrastructure, and staffing levels of these systems to see if they work well and this is where partnerships come in.

ICT plays an important role in supporting, enhancing, and accelerating the achievement of health targets.

ICT is a crucial tool that needs to be fully utilised by developing countries in order to improve access to quality healthcare for populations in resource-constrained settings.

Besides ICT, we also have a responsibility to come up with innovative solutions that tackle some of society’s most pressing challenges such as access to quality and affordable healthcare.

Technology has the power to improve health outcomes, specifically by providing access, quality, experience, and improving efficiency.