• eHealthAFRO
  • Influence regional eHealth strategy at eHealthAFRO 2017

    "To begin, begin,” said William Wordsworth. eHealth was in that position a few years ago, but not anymore. Now there are a myriad of initiatives exploring opportunities for changing our health systems for the better. A challenge is not how to start, but what to do next: which eHealth to invest in, who to encourage, and how to collaborate for maximum benefit from available resources.

    eHealthAFRO 2017 will tackle these questions by tapping into the combined knowledge of the few hundred eHealth and health systems experts congregating at Emperors Palace from 2-4 October. “Two heads are better than one, not because either is infallible, but because they are unlikely to go wrong in the same direction”, said C S Lewis. This is the game changing philosophy that eHealthAFRO is built upon.

    The conference’s plenary will be arranged in banquet style. Team-tables of eight will debate keynote presentations and academic papers to formulate one agreed action for each presentation. These actions will be collated and consolidated throughout the conference, culminating in a voting session on the final afternoon to rank priorities. An output of eHealthAFRO 2017 will be a list of priority actions that conference participants will take to help move Southern African eHealth forward. A summary report will be shared with Southern African ministries of health.

    Join Africa’s eHealth community and add your voice at eHA2017.

    Get your tickets here.

  • Participants shape Africa’s eHealth opportunities at eHA2017’s use-case bazaar

    I have been inundated with questions about the eHA2017 use-case bazaar since I wrote about it two weeks ago. It’s one of the big attractions at this year’s conference. Participants get to talk about their solutions and test their ideas with the eHealth community.

    So, how does it work?

    The conference starts in plenary, banquet style, eight people per table. Your table is your team for the conference. You will explore eHealth’s breadth and depth together for two and half days, extract lessons from everything you hear and refine them into action items for yourself and your team, and recommendations for African ministries of health.

    Tuesday, after lunch, table-teams will journey through a selection of use-case presentations in one of three themed rooms, spending up to half an hour at each use-case station in the room. Presenters will invite comments and suggestions to take their ideas to the next level. This is no passive show-and-tell session. It’s an interactive forum in which participants will shape Africa’s eHealth opportunities together.  Wednesday afternoon is a repeat with a new set of use-cases.

    So, what can you explore?

    There are two emerging themes for the use-case bazaar; “eHealth apps, devices and mHealth initiatives at point of care and in people’s hands” and “eHealth systems, infrastructure and interoperability”.  Each of the three rooms will have a blend of these themes. Presenters include CSIR, Jembi, HISP, CIDER, SANAC, Mobenzi, Vula, TOPMSA, Praekelt, MomConnect, HST, University of Pretoria, Tshwane University of Technology and more. Explore them on the eHA2017 website programme page.

    Participants are encouraged to explore use-cases that will benefit their eHealth journey, while use-cases have the opportunity to analyse their ideas and solutions through focused-group discussions with participants.

    eHA2017’s changed the conference game!

    Get your tickets here.


  • eHealthAFRO 2017 is interactive

    "Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people," said Steve Jobs. eHealth fits this perspective.

    eHealth's a high-risk endeavor, so collaboration’s an essential part of success. It’s at the heart of eHealthAFRO 2017. eHA2017 changes the conference game by making participants part of eHealth planning & decision making for Africa.

    Interactive sharing and eHealth wisdom track through all sessions. The core theme’s “eHealth for UHC”. UHC can’t be achieved without eHealth, and the eHealth it needs is sophisticated.

    eHealthAFRO isn’t like conventional conferences. Each keynote - the only conventional part of the programme - concludes with an interactive roundtable discussion, where each table of delegates debate what they heard from the keynote and agree one recommendation for priority action.

    There’s an eHealth Use-case Bazaar too, with a wide range of eHealth solutions to review. Use cases provide the latest value of eHealth projects.

    Whichever eHealth role you have, eHealthAFRO’s not to be missed. Get your tickets here.

    #eHA2017 #AreYouReady?

  • DG for Health Precious Matsoso to open eHealthAFRO 2017

    Ms Malebona Precious Matsoso will open eHealthAFRO 2017. She is passionate about eHealth's transformative potential and believes that achieving "UHC depends on effective, patient-centred eHealth". We are thrilled to confirm that she has accepted our invitation to open the conference with a personal address and perspective on eHealth in South Africa.


    Ms Matsoso is no stranger to eHealth, information systems and their role in transforming health and healthcare. She has led South Africa’s eHealth strategy and its current review. The overarching objectives that place eHealth in a core role to support Universal Health Coverage (UHC) are challenging to achieve. Her leadership is essential in securing these for the long term. Her vision sets the context for the provinces and local health services for their eHealth endeavours.



    Ms Matsoso drives the Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC) that I have the honour of serving on, alongside ten South African eHealth leaders. She recognises that eHeath is essential to achieve better health for all and is leading the MAC to ensure that South Africa's eHealth will support health transformation, helping sustain the health of South Africans in line with international good practice.


    The conference theme “eHealth for UHC” emphasises UHC’s dependence on effective, patient-centred eHealth. Ms Matsoso sets the direction and a realistic timescales for successful eHealth.


    Ms Matsoso was appointed Director General of the National Department of Health (NDOH) by the President of South Africa on 08 June 2010. She serves under the Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi. 

    She holds a degree in Pharmacy, a Postgraduate Diploma in Health Management from the University of Cape Town, and a Masters degree in Law and Ethics (LLM) from the University of Dundee. Her career has included posts as Head of Medicines Control Council (MCC), member of the National Research Ethics Council of South Africa, and the Director of the Essential Drugs and Traditional Medicines Programme for the South African Health Department. She was a Director in Public Health Innovation and Intellectual Property (PHI) in the office of the Director General, of the World Health Organisation (WHO) serving as WHO Secretariat on Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property. She served as the Chair of the Executive Board at World Health Organization from 2015 to 2016.


    Ms Matsoso has a bold vision for health transformation and we look forward to her comments when she opens eHealthAFRO 2017.

    Get your tickets here.

    #eHA2017 #AreYouReady?




  • webDHIS data experts for South Africa at eHealthAFRO 2017 pre-conference seminar

    A new seminar will help to develop data management experts for South Africa’s National Department of Health (NDoH) and provinces to expand use of the webDHIS and its data to support the best possible health strengthening decisions. The seminar is part of the extensive eHealthAFRO 2017 pre-conference programme.

    Health Information Systems Program – South Africa (HISP-SA) data specialists and NDoH partners, led by Chief Director Ms. Thulile Zondi and her team from the Health Information Research and M&E (HIRME) cluster will facilitate the five-day seminar. It is designed to give participants an understanding of data management principles and hot to get the most out of the webDHIS.

    Find out more about pre-conference seminars on the eHealthAFRO website. Tickets are available through the conference website or from Quicket. Don’t miss your opportunity to a part of this landmark event for the eHealth community in Southern Africa.


    HISP-SA develops and implements health information systems. Its vision is to do this sustainably to empower healthcare participants and improve the efficiency of health services, in partnership with ministries of health. HISP-SA is supporting webDHIS rollout across South Africa.

    The webDHIS is the South African deployment of the web-based District Health Information System 2 (DHIS2). NDoH first adopted the DHIS in early 2000. The primary objective of DHIS is to generate, analyze and disseminate health information. This facilitates effective policy development, formulate and implement health programmes, direct and budget health resources effectively, and monitor and evaluate healthcare in South Africa.

  • Discover Africa’s plethora of eHealth opportunities at eHealthAFRO 2017 Use-case Bazaar

    Industry stakeholders are realising the opportunity for eHealth to help expand access to healthcare resources, improve patient outcomes, and increase efficiency of healthcare services. The eHealth space in Africa is experiencing an explosion of new ideas and technologies, which the eHealthAFRO 2017 conference will showcase. It takes place at Emperors Palace from 2-4 October 2017.

    Afternoon use-case bazaars on Tuesday and Wednesday will allow conference participants to explore 48 new ideas and technologies. These sessions will feature compelling eHealth solutions and implementations. The use-case bazaar themes extend from the conference theme: eHealth for Universal Health Care (eH4UHC) and includes mobile apps and devices, eHealth systems and architecture, and eHealth use-cases demonstrating on-the-ground successes.

    Participating organizations include HISP-SA, UCT's CIDER, Jembi Health Systems, SANAC's Focus for Impact project, the AitaHealth assisted community outreach project, HPCSA’s new eLogbook for interns and many more.

    See the expanding list on the eHealthAFRO website. Don’t miss this opportunity to engage with industry leaders, share your ideas and keep abreast of eHealth developments in Southern Africa.

    If you or your organization have an interesting eHealth solution or project, let it be shown where Africa meets for eHealth. There are still a few open slots for organizations that would like the opportunity to showcase their eHealth idea or technology. For more on this opportunity, contact the eHealthAFRO organizing committee here.

  • AeHIN Governing Committee member Jai Ganesh Udayasankaran will be at eHealthAfro 2017 #AreYouReady?

    Acfee and the Asian eHealth Information Network (AeHIN) are building a link for Africa’s eHealth strategies and programmes to learn from South Asia’s experiences. Part of this is bringing their eHealth leaders to Africa. For eHealth Afro, Jai Ganesh Udayasankaran will present his ideas, achievements and experiences in India and AeHIN in the context of Africa learning from AeHIN’s eHealth leadership experiences of AeHIN and promoting collaboration between Africa and Asia. 

    He has several roles. One is senior manager for healthcare ICT and telehealth programme coordinator for Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust, India. Jai’s also a member of AeHIN’s Governing Committee and Working Council and a health ICT consultant. His wide experience’s directly relevant for Africa’s eHealth. It extends across:

    • Planning, procuring, project managing and implementing  web-based Hospital Information Systems (HIS)
    • Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS)
    • Telemedicine, tele-education, handheld devices at Points of Care (PoC)
    • Minimum data set and standardisation in EHRs
    • Hospital Management Information Systems (HMIS) for mobile hospitals
    • Chronic disease management system with integrated vital signs telemetry kit with a web portal for proactive and continuous monitoring of patients with chronic ailments
    • Capacity building
    • Technical assistance in eHealth and mHealth
    • Mentoring student projects for IoT bio-medical sensors. 

    Asia’s a diverse region. Jai has worked on eHealth in many of its countries and institutions and beyond. They include WHO’s South-East Asia Regional Office (SEARO), Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Manila, temporary adviser to WHO’s) Western Pacific Regional Office and Canada’s Research Partner. He was also part of the PAN Asian Collaboration for Evidence-based eHealth Adoption and Application (PANACeA) with Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC).

    His interest in telehealth includes a role with the International Medical Informatics Association (IMIA) Working Group/Special Interest Group on Telehealth. He’s a member of the Indian Journal of Medical Informatics (IJMI) Editorial Review Board too.

    As part of Acfee’s eHealth sharing and learning goals, Jai will help eHealthAFRO’s delegates to pick out the relevant themes from India and wider Asia’s eHealth for their own programmes. He’ll also provide ideas and options for the next steps of Acfee and AeHIN’s collaboration.

  • eHealthAFRO sets the pace #AreYouReady?

    Interest in Acfee's eHealthAFRO conference is extending across Africa. The enthusiasm is reflected in its new name eHealthAFRO 2017 Southern Africa that matches the pan-African relevance. Its new name reflects the expanding programme and its difference to other events.

    eHealthAFRO 2017 has three parts:

    1. A week of pre-conference seminars from 26 September to 1 October
    2. The main event programme from 2 to 4 October’s that includes presentations, debates, several breakaway workshops and SAHIAs HISA academic programme.
    3. The post-conference African eHealth Forum where Acfee’s Advisory Board meets on 5 and 6 October.

    eHealthAFRO 2017 includes:

    • National eHealth strategies for Universal Access to Care, with a panel of Ministers and representatives from across Africa
    • A demonstration of eHealth robotics by eHealth Group
    • Updates on Cyber-security
    • Information about South Africa’s National Health Insurance programme and National eHealth Strategy
    • Updates on eHealth Strategy, governance, regulation and impact
    • The District Health Information System (DHIS)DHIS Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) global success
    • Breakaway workshops on OpenMRS, OpenHIE, OpenSRP, Vula and Bahmni, and open source EMR, and other topics
    • A perspective on India’s eHealth and lessons for Africa
    • Updates on Public health and surveillance.

    Discussions are underway with other eHealth organisations about their participation. Updates on progress will be on eHNA and eHealthAFRO 2017.

    Themes in the pre-conference seminars include:

    • Building blocks for eHealth strategies
    • Future eHealth leadership
    • WebDHIS for data managers
    • Hosting DHIS2
    • South Africa’s Health Normative Health Standards Framework (HNSF)
    • Managing an NGO in challenging times.

    It is vital that people in eHealth share and learn from each other’s ideas and progress. Join us at eHealthAFRO 2017 Southern Africa because eHealth’s transforming health and healthcare, and everyone’s ideas, experiences and challenges are valuable.

    eHealthAFRO is where healthcare professionals, government leaders eHealth enthusiasts and industry stakeholders explore tangible eHealth opportunities and eHealth excellence in Southern Africa and across the content. We look forward to welcoming you.

  • eHealth Group offers a telehealth paradigm shift

    About a third of African countries invest in telehealth, identified by the WHO and Global Observatory for eHealth in their 2015 survey. Since then, eHealth Group, based in South Africa, has leapfrogged telehealth’s technology and its supply side. 

    Its lineage goes back to the Da Vinci Robotic Surgery. This enabled eHealth Group to incorporate the ideas, principles and techniques into its robotic telehealth services. Instead of a link between a patient and a healthcare professional, eHealth Group’s robots and products enable healthcare professionals to deal directly and easily with several patients in wards, ICUs and communities.

    At its core are:

    • Direct access to a wide range of clinical data about patients
    • Explicit, precise and clear images of patients
    • Its own excellent, global telecommunication network. An example is where doctors can have two screens.

    The picture shows a doctor accessing a patient’s view and PACS side by side. It’s an efficient and effective use of his time and benefits patients directly.

    South Africa’s eHealth Group provides services across Africa. It’s part of a global network, operating in over 30 countries, across 20 specialties in over a thousand hospitals and over 4,000 medical specialists available online. About 70% of US telestroke hospitals in the USA use eHealth Group’s services, up from 30% four years ago. 

    There’s a wide product range extending from tablets to sophisticated robots that provide high quality telehealth. Alongside the products, eHealth Group provides a service range including access to advice from a network of medical specialists, specialists who can provide direct patient care, and training. 

    Elliot Sack and some of his robots from eHealth Group will be at eHealthAfro 2017 on 2 to 4 October in Johannesburg. His presentation will reveal the paradigm shift that can make a difference to Africa’s health and healthcare. eHNA has more to report on it.

  • Call for Papers - six days to go

    Sharing eHealth experiences and research finding’s essential to progress. These are the main goals of the Health Informatics South Africa (HISA) Call for Papers (CfP) for its conference at eHealthAFRO 2017 on 2 to 4 October 2017 in Johannesburg. It’s hosted by the South African Health Informatics Association (SAHIA). The CfP has four topics. They are:

    • eHealth Strategy, governance and regulation
    • eHealth impact through routine health information
    • Cyber-security related to eHealth applications
    • eHealth systems related to public health and surveillance. 

    Papers on other relevant eHealth topics may be considered. Will extra papers include health informatics developments and research on eHealth futures, such as AI and health analytics?

    The timetable is: 

    • Full papers submitted to South African Computer Journal (SACJ), complying with SACJ’s submission guidelines, by Monday 28 August 2017    
    • Notification of paper acceptance on Friday, 15 September 2017
    • Final author registration by Friday, 22 September 2017
    • Final paper due Friday, 29 September.

    A special SACJ edition will published presented papers. They’ll comply with SACJ’s editorial process, so at the end of the submission form, comments to the editor should include “HISA Conference paper.”

    eHealthAFRO 2017 brings together researchers and practitioners active in health informatics. At least one author should register for eHealthAFRO and present the paper at the HISA Conference for the paper to be eligible for SACJ publication. SACJ charges ZAR6,000 for publication costs for accepted papers, but authors with no funding can apply for this to be waived.

    Prof Nicky Mostert-Phipps is the contact for submissions. She is a software development lecturer at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Faculty of Engineering’s Built Environment and Information Technology, and can provide more information about HISA’s conference and preparing and submitting papers.