How The Power Of SMS Is Solving Zambia's Malaria Epidemic

4 January, 2019

Extracts of news article by Nicholas Fearn below. Full text here: https://www.forbes.com/sites/nicholasfearn/2019/01/03/how-the-power-of-s...

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Zambia is just one country where risk for Malaria is high, but its government has made a bold pledge to eliminate the disease by 2021. Over the coming years, it’ll invest $102.4 million in anti-malaria activities through the National Malaria Elimination Center...

To track the number of malaria cases in the country and find available treatments, the Zambian government collects data from local health centers and stores it in a national database...

In a bid to transform the outdated system, PATH and the Zambian Government have formed the Visualize No Malaria partnership with American cloud business Twilio and other organizations. Through its social good communications initiative, Twilio provides financial and strategic support to help not-for-profit organizations utilize technology in their important work.

Using Twilio’s programmable SMS network, the National Malaria Elimination Centre is able to seamlessly message health care facility staff regarding data quality issues. They can then report back with data that was previously missing.

Although the project is still in the early stages, it’s already giving Zambia’s Ministry of Health a clearer picture of the disease and its impact on the country.

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HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is the coordinator of HIFA-Zambia and the HIFA campaign (Healthcare Information For All - www.hifa.org ) and current chair of the Dgroups Foundation (www.dgroups.info), which supports 700 communities of practice for international development, social justice and global health. Twitter: @hifa_org FB: facebook.com/HIFAdotORG neil@hifa.org