Telemedicine

Mobile phones to fight with HIV/AIDS pandemic in Africa

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The US Government and the leading mobile phone companies have joined together to fight with HIV/AIDS and other health related issues in 10 African countries. Mobile Industry leaders, including Motorola MTN and Voxiva have partnered with the GSM Association’s Department Fund, the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and Accenture Development Partnerships to fight with HIV/AIDS.  Later this partnership would be extended in Africa and Asia to fight with tuberculosis, malaria and other infectious diseases. This scheme will allow field workers to use standard Motorola mobile phone, which would be equipped with downloadable application to enter health data. Once, the user will enter the health data, the data would be transferred through a packet based mobile connection (GPRS) into a central database. If user doesn’t have a GPRS, user can also a SMS data channel to transmit the information. Then, the data is immediately mapped and analyzed by the system and it would be immediately available to health authorities at multiple levels through the web. The system also supports SMS alerting and other tools for communication. MTN, which is operating in 21 countries in Africa and the Middle East, will support the roll out of handsets and underlying data service. Voxiva has already deployed a system, named TRACnet in Rawanda to manage HIV/AIDS programmes nationwide.

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