Tuesday, December 06, 2011
The AfriHealth Conference held ecently in Nairobi claims that importing or copying the latest 'e-health' technology from developed countries may not be the best way forward for health services in Africa. A focus on high-tech healthcare solutions could come at the expense of basic prevention such as access to clean water and sanitation, good nutrition and hygiene, and health education. In a continent where 80per cent of illnesses stem from preventable infectious diseases, this is a move in the wrong direction, said Yunkap Kwankam, executive director of the International Society for Telemedicine and eHealth. According to him, most African health needs can be solved by the age-old basics of water and sanitation, nutrition and hygiene; if we concentrate on these we will make big strides in the lives of our people."