Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) at the Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs Maureen Mbaka joined AfyaRekord, a digital Health Data platform in launching the Universal Patient Portal at the Movenpick Hotel in Westlands Nairobi on Thursday.
Speaking at the event, Mbaka lauded the efforts of the AfyaRekord management team for launching a portal that will go a long way in changing the way Kenyans access their records and health services.
“This milestone will surely put Kenya on the map as a leader in patient driven healthcare and health data management,” she said.
Mbaka stated that Kenya’s Vision 2030 calls for the development of a vibrant ICT sector, and on the back of this the government has developed a number of policies and documents that emphasize the importance of technology and innovation in achieving Kenya’s strategic goals.
“Among the policies is the National ICT Policy that was set up to grow the contribution of ICT to the economy upwards of 10 per cent by 2030. The government has always seen ICT as a foundation to the creation of a more robust economy,” said the CAS.
Mbaka noted that the use of data in driving and inspiring better decisions is very important. “The enactment of the Data Protection Act in Kenya has led to considerable strides in enabling the proper use of data,” she said.
“For Kenya, and Africa, data and the correct application or use of it will unlock opportunities that will see economies thrive as the insights provided are likely to translate to increased transparency and good governance,” she added.
Mbaka stated that in the health sector, the Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs is implementing Wide Area and Local Area connectivity in all the level 4 to level 6 hospitals in the medium term and all the remaining level 3 and level 2 hospitals in the long term.
“The Ministry in conjunction with the Ministry of Health is implementing an enterprise-wide solution to facilitate the automation of health services which will all be processed and managed locally,” she said.
AfyaRekord founder and CEO John Kamara stated that data has great value in healthcare, and the Universal Patient portal will now help patients with chronic diseases to consolidate and track all their medical data.
“Cancer patients will often be required to carry multiple documents going through their cancer journey, but with this platform all their data will now be safely stored in one place,” said the CEO.
Kamara noted that the platform is as a result of plenty of work and research by some of the best minds in health care.
“Not only can you track your medical data, but you can also input and track your children,” he said. “You can book appointments, connect directly with your doctor or even video chat,” he added.
Kamara said he was pleased to launch a platform that will change lives and improve access to quality healthcare for all Kenyans.
By Mike Mulinge