Diabetes Association Goes Digital

Global healthcare organisation, Norvatis South Africa on Friday last week officially handed over five laptops to the Zimbabwe Diabetes Association (ZDA) to assist towards the screening and management of diabetic patients across the country.

The donation follows a visit by Norvatis South Africa to Zimbabwe earlier this year where they discovered that the efforts of the ZDA to screen and manage diabetes in the country were scampered by the absence of computer to capture data digitally.

Officiating at the handover ceremony, Chief Executive Officer of Harare Hospital, Dr George Vera who was standing for the Deputy Ministry of Health and Child Care, Dr Aldrin Musiwa said, “Capturing of patients’ data digitally is important to enable the health care to accurate information.

“10% of the population is diabetic and the Ministry of Health and Child Care is looking for partners who can help hospitals and clinics with diabetes testing facilities,

“Ministry also needs resources to come up with current statistics on people living with diabetes, with high costs the disease is a significant challenge for health care systems and an obstacle to sustainable economic development,

“I am glad computers have been donated alongside with drugs and these will go to Harare Central Hospital, Chitungwiza Central hospital, Mpilo Central Hospital and United Bulawayo Hospitals,” said Vera.

He stressed the importance of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) as a reliable medium to record figures and statistics for the benefit of government.

Speaking at the handover ceremony, Norvatis South Africa representative, Pious Musiza said his company was pushed to assist after noticing that that Zimbabwe Diabetes Association was short of ICT equipment to keep data.

“After the visit to Zimbabwe, talks were held with government officials from ZDA and the Harare Central Hospital diabetes unit,

“Norvatis immediately took steps to donate the necessary laptops to help the ZDA maintain patient records more efficiently,

“With between 30 000-40 000 diabetes patients already on the ZDA database and an urgent need for more screening services across the country, ZDA can now capture screening results and manage patient records more efficiently using the laptops donated by Norvatis,

“The laptops will be distributed to the five main ZDA operational regions to help speed up data capturing and optimize ZDA resources across Zimbabwe,” he said.

Zimbabwe Diabetes Association President, Dr John Mangwiro expressed gratitude towards the donation saying that it will go a long way in easing the burden of manually recording information for diabetes patients.

“We are very grateful for the donation and Norvatis said they will donate more computers and make sure every province is digital,

“On top of the computers we were given diabetes drugs,

“About 20 000 patients were registered manually and with the donate computers  now it can be done digitally,” said Mangwiro.

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