Moving from Paper-Based Systems to Electronic Systems in South Africa
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Author(s): MEASURE Evaluation SIFSA
In 2005, the World Health Assembly recognized e-Health as the way to achieve cost-effective and secure use of information and communications technologies (ICTs) for health and related fields, and urged its member states to consider drawing up long-term strategic plans for developing and implementing eHealth services and infrastructure in their health sectors. The South African government published its National eHealth Strategy for 2012 to 2016 in September 2012.
The South African National eHealth Strategy aims to “provide a clear roadmap that guides the health system from a largely paper-based system with some electronic data collection to an integrated, interoperable, national patient-based information system that improves the efficiency of clinical care, produces the indicators required by management, and facilitates patient mobility.”
To identify the current state of eHealth in South Africa, the eHealth strategy referenced the landscape analysis of health information systems (HIS) in developing countries, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. This landscape analysis identified five stages of eHealth implementation based upon data flow and collection, data utilization and integration, resources and capacity, scope, and scale.
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