An eHealth connection between the French Medical Institute for Children (FMIC) in Afghanistan and the Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi (AKUH, K) in Pakistan marks the start of the AKDN eHealth Programme, allowing doctors at FMIC to share CT scans, mammograms and x-rays with radiologists at AKUH, K for second opinion and diagnosis.
The Aga Khan Health Service, Pakistan health centres in Aliabad, Gulmit, Gupis, Immit, Singal, Soust and Thoi are connected to the Gilgit Medical Centre for store-and-forward teleconsultations in various specialities.
The French Medical Institute for Children begins broadcasting eLearning courses to health care providers at Bamyan Provincial Hospital. eLearning builds professional capacity and reduces isolation, often created by living and working in remote areas.
In the wake of the landslide at Attabad, Hunza, that resulted in casualties and displaced many, teleconsultations in Psychiatry are offered from Ayub Medical College, Abbottabad to Karimabad Health Centre, Hunza, to provide disaster management assistance to affectees. AKDN eHRC provides the eHealth platform needed to conduct the teleconsultations.
Video conferencing technology connects patients at Bamyan Provincial Hospital in real-time to specialists at the French Medical Institute for Children for timely diagnosis and treatment.
Faizabad Provincial Hospital is connected to the French Medical Institute for Children for live and store-and-forward teleconsultations. eLearning services initiate later as well. By December 2015, over 5000 teleconsultations have been provided. And over 1000 health care providers have been trained through eLearning sessions.
Over the next four years, AKDN eHRC would go on to become an indispensible resource, helping to expand the AKDN eHealth Programme across South and Central Asia and East Africa and connecting multiple sites for eHealth services.
Efforts to create an integrated eHealth network in South and Central Asia result in Khorog Oblast General Hospital (KOGH) in Tajikistan being connected to the French Medical Institute for Children in Afghanistan. Patients coming to KOGH for live teleconsultations save 41 hours of travel time otherwise spent travelling to the next nearest facility for the same service.
AKDN eHRC provides technical assistance to the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Tanzania and Aga Khan Health Service, Tanzania, with implementing eHealth activities under the Joining Hands Initiative. The programme focuses on improving maternal, newborn and child health services in five target regions in Tanzania.
Mirwais Regional Hospital becomes the first government-owned facility in Central Asia to be connected to the AKDN eHealth network.
Bashore, Ishkashim and Nusai Comprehensive Health Centres are connected to Khorog Oblast General Hospital in Tajikistan and to Faizabad Provincial Hospital in Afghanistan for live teleconsultations.
The online portal manages physician-patient and physician-physician teleconsultations, and allows physicians to record, access and analyze patient data with utmost privacy and confidentiality. Modules are also developed for cancer (breast, cervical, oral and prostate) screening and cataract surgery.
BBC Persian Network’s "Medical Development in Afghanistan" highlights how communities in Afghanistan are benefitting from the AKDN eHealth Programme.
Participants from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Tajikistan are trained on the use of innovative eHealth technologies to provide quality health care services to patients in remote communities.
The eHealth Programme responds to a need for Psychiatry services from communities in Gilgit-Baltistan and connects Gilgit Medical Centre to the Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi for live teleconsultations in Psychiatry. This connection would later go on to provide teledermatology consultations as well.
Khorog Oblast General Hospital refers teleradiology cases to the National Medical Centre and later to the Aga Khan Health Board, USA, so radiologists at the two sites can provide second opinion and diagnosis on complicated cases.
The programme focuses on screening target population, collecting clinical and demographic data to better understand the prevalence of breast cancer; training local health care providers on breast cancer care; and promoting on-going women’s health programmes for the early detection and treatment of breast cancer. The Aga Khan Health Board, USA provides clinical and technical support, sending volunteers from USA.
AKDN eHRC assists with patient registration and case management through VirtualDoc.
Engineers and developers at AKDN eHRC conduct cutting-edge research to ideate, design, develop and test high-impact, cost-effective innovative devices that respond to health care delivery challenges in low-resource settings.
A community-wide Breast Cancer Screening Camp is organised in Mombasa, Kenya in October, and another one in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania in November. Both projects use the breast cancer screening module of the VirtualDoc platform developed by AKDN eHRC for patient registration and case management. These activities are a collaborative effort between Aga Khan Hospital, Mombasa; Aga Khan University Hospital, Nairobi; Aga Khan Hospital, Dar es Salaam; the Ismaili Health Professional Association, USA; AKDN eHRC; and countless volunteers and health care professionals, among others.
The award recognises the best use of Information and Communication Technologies and digital tools to create holistic and comprehensive impact on people in South Asia and Asia Pacific.
Participants receive advanced training on managing ICT related issues during eHealth service delivery; monitoring and evaluating eHealth activities; and effectively communicating eHealth progress to stakeholders.
The certificate course is designed to help health professionals understand eHealth concepts, address challenges around eHealth service delivery and implement effective eHealth programmes in low- and-middle income countries. The course has opened to a global audience in 2016. Learn more and apply at: courses.akdnehrc.com
Health care providers at Aga Khan Booni Medical Centre, Gilgit Medical Centre and Singal Medical Centre receive eLearning sessions from the Aga Khan University. Participants no longer have to travel long distances and spend time and money to avail professional development services.
Patients at the French Medical Institute for Children benefit from live teleconsultations in ENT and Adult and Paediatric Neurology. This connection between the two sites was the eHealth Programme’s first, established in 2007 for teleradiology services.
This is the second speciality offered from the Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi to patients at Gilgit after telepsychiatry was introduced in 2014.
The Republican Children’s Clinical Hospital in Bishkek is connected to the Naryn Oblast Hospital for live teleconsultations in Paediatrics and to the Naryn Oblast Family Medicine Centre in Naryn for eLearning services in Family Medicine.
This development marks the first time purely government-owned and managed facilities have been connected under the Programme.