Kenya rolls out Ksh.600 million telemedicine in marginalised areas
Kenya is set to unveil plans to address the deficit of requisite medical personnel in the rural areas through a multimillion telemedicine project meant to improve access to better healthcare.
The head of the Health Service Management department, Ministry of Health Joseph Sitienei said that the government through the Communication Authority has set aside Ksh.600 million to fund the laying out of the foundation for telemedicine in 20 health facilities.
This follows the piloting of the programme that was conducted at the Kenyatta National and Isiolo Hospitals.
“If we cannot provide enough skilled staff in all our health facilities, we can surely take the skilled staff to the rural areas through telemedicine,” said Sitienei.
Sitienei argued that the highly skilled health care workers’ distribution in Kenya is tilted towards urban areas leaving the rural areas poorly staffed. This disproportionate distribution affects health infrastructure as well.
The telemedicine project will be hosted on the Digital Health Platform that facilitates efficient and effective service delivery and accountability in health facilities.
“The Ministry of Health has taken innovations and technology in the health sector as one step towards improving health care and meet the needs of Kenyans as we roll out the Universal Health coverage.”
The Ministry of Health said the platform will enable real time collection of patient data and provide platforms for integration with other critical databases.