Ghana’s Medical Knowledge Fiesta kicked off in Accra on the 15th of September. The conference lasted 5 days and saw a range of innovations showcased, including the launch of Mahiri-telmedx RemoteCare™. Mahiri-telmedx is a joint venture between Mahiri Mobile Services Ltd (Ghana) and telmedx Inc. a San Diego, a video-based telemedicine provider. By combining their technologies and market knowledge, the partnership developed their telemedicine-managed remote diagnostics serviceoffering preventative, diagnostic and aftercare solutions for public hospitals, private hospitals and the insurance sector.Video demonstration of teams in action with ambulance services and medical teams working together on outreach programmes with mobile clinics where provided at the conference.
The eight-month pilot in Ghana demonstrated positive results for doctor-nurse-patient engagements and interventions and set the stage for the formal launch. Consultations allowed images and videos to be analysed and stored in patient records. One of the benefits of Mahiri-telmedx’s RemoteCare™ Managed Services is secure handling of patient data and monitoring of service levels, which is challenging to achieve in Africa’s infrastructure environments.Mahiri-telmedx RemoteCare™ provides real-time support to emergency and rapid response services such as ambulance teams, disaster recovery and infectious disease management. It allows specialists and other health workers to participate remotely in patients care, in real-time, as events and needs unfold.
Collaborative features of the managed service help to support workgroups in the same, or different hospitals to provide joint, integrated care. The service also has a learning environment. The learning management application features enable medical teams to engage in online and remote learning.
Mahiri-telmedx has been designed to provide a holistic solution including EPR management using structured forms on Mahiri’s tablet PCs, a high resolution HIPAA-compliant video-based application providing medical grade videos, and imaging that is USA FDA approved and meets the EU medical privacy requirements. Sophisticated management reporting features provide analysis of vital signs, geographical information, demographic information, ailments, treatment and treatment plans.Feedback from health workers involved in the pilot project is encouraging. Examples are:
Nurse at Nsawam Government District Hospital, Ghana, “This has boosted home visits and school health service visits. We now know more about ailments and skin disorders.”Consultant Neurosurgeon, Tamale Teaching Hospital, “In existing approach the doctor does not see the patient. With the Mahiri-telmedx solution the doctor sees all aspects including the face. This is the way forward. For the community, they can be comforted by the knowledge the doctor is seeing them live and they will see a specialist. Someone in the big hospital is coming to see them and that has a psychological effect.”
Director for Health Service, Nsawam Government District Hospital, “When nurses discharge patients we are able to follow up based on the image and records sent. We are using it for teaching and learning purposes as we come across rare things we would not find when sitting in the classrooms.”
The next phase of Mahiri-telmedx’s development will include the launch of a customer services and triage service.Mahiri-telmedx is now available in Ghana and Nigeria and will soon be launched throughout Sub-Saharan Africa, accommodating health institutions of different sizes in hub and spoke collaborations, large public hospitals supporting community health care centres and small medical practices. RemoteCare™ offers models for the insurance sector for corporate healthcare schemes and homecare.
Medical Knowledge Fiesta is hosted by the Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons (GCPS) in collaboration with the African Partners Medical (APM) and the Ghana Physicians and Surgeons Foundation (GPSF) of North America. It’s good to see it as a launch site for e+mHealth across Africa.