The launch of the UHS integrated Digital Health platform supported by the Ministry of Health (MOH) marks a great milestone for the University in line with a long-term road map for digitizing its functions and processes. The launch event presided over by the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Stephen Kiama was preceded by an interactive demo outlining a step by step patient process journey.
The introduction of IDH system is expected to significantly reduce the need for maintaining paper-based records and improve patient service. Some automated functions include patient registration, examination, drug prescription, lab tests, injections, radiology testing, and summary report generation.
Prof. Kiama in his remarks articulated some of the long-term benefits that the UHS will amass including opening up to serving members of the wider public in the future “This system interlinks all our satellite clinics; the university will be able to attend to patients and get recoups from NHIF and eventually make UHS more sustainable” he said. Further, the IDH will provide valuable insights to aid in managing supply side. “We are able to cost and have data that we couldn’t have before and the director is able to tell how many patients have been served and what services they were given” added Prof. Kiama.
The IDH system will also aid in better management of capacity. For example, nurse staffing, which accounts for a significant proportion of hospitals’ costs. Instead of relying on phone calls, text messages, and spreadsheets to make ad-hoc staffing decisions that often change at the very last minute, the UHS director will now utilize analytics to improve this process. From a clinical perspective, the IDH improves quality by giving timely access to critical clinical information, mobilizing new resources, and ensuring accountability in how they are used.
Dr. Lucy Muhia, Director UHS said “the system will allow for timely decision on health matters, accountability and transparency. This will help us improve our services and turnaround time”
Commenting on the launch, Head Division of health informatics MOH, Dr. Wilson Ooga stated “The University of Nairobi as a center of excellence came across as a suitable partner for the roll out of AfyaKE because of the dynamic population it serves”
Also in attendance were Prof. Julius Ogeng’o, Deputy Vice Chancellor Academics, Mr. Brian Ouma, Chief Operations Officer, Heads of directorate and UHS staff.