Are you a Doctor or a healthcare provider or someone responsible by the authority for health care? At Villages, India or elsewhere, all of us are struggling with the accessibility of care. Many of us travel to the nearest urban setup or even metros to get access to even a basic form of care. Is it sustainable? Maybe yes; but with associated costs and risks. Interconnectedness has provided all of us with a unique opportunity today to link community based initiatives, programmes and service delivery for improving Primary Care. It takes more than a doctor and a healthcare professional to keep the lives of people in Villages Healthy.
With the increasing demand for healthcare services and supply gap of trained professional added with limited Infrastructure; having a dedicated + self-reliant Primary Healthcare System is a (time + economic development). There is no doubt that there is an urgent need for investment and action to strengthen integrated primary health systems through a range of approaches and improvements at multiple levels. Yes, a comprehensive series of reform measure is the need of the day. But, the problem is complex, and the solution has to start somewhere. National Rural Health Mission in India provides an opportunity to drive a change and create an impact where it is most needed. It provides access to the platforms –both within households and communities and within health systems – that have the greatest potential to immediately begin to translate knowledge into action.
Consider this, Lakshmi lives in a small remote village near Hasdiha in Bihar. The village has a population of little over 1500 people. She’s a graduate and an Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA). She has undergone training with basic medical skills which help her create the highest impact on her community by keeping them healthy. She could facilitate better access to basic health care services to poor households. Lakshmi creates awareness about health issues and their social determinants engaging closely with pregnant women, mothers and other household members to negotiate and adopt appropriate care practices, and mobilizing her community to take part in local health planning. She helps in increasing the use and accountability of existing health services. In addition to her primary role as a promoter of desired health practices, she also provides a package of curative care as appropriate and feasible for her role. She’s a mobile Primary Health Care giver for her community. When required, she does make timely referrals to other practicing physicians and doctors. She is a true catalyst for her community.
One another inspiring example is of Raj Panjabi. Raj’s team at Last Mile Health save lives in the World’s most remote villages by giving village health workers the training, equipment, and support they need to do as professionals. His country Liberia is the poorest war-torn nation on earth. Liberia is recovering from one of the 20th century’s most devastating civil wars. Last Mile Health℠ is creating a new health workforce to bring care to remote villages by transforming community health workers into real professionals — so-called frontline health workers. Frontline Health Workers (FHWs) are gifted women, former patients and community-based providers who are recruited and given the employment, training, equipment and supervision they need to perform and deliver primary care — tackling the top five diseases that kill women and children in villages too far from doctors.
Programs like ASHA or Organization like Last Mile Health helps in improving an access to care, and addressing the human resources skill gaps faced by health systems. It further helps in improving the ability of systems to offer preventive care and chronic disease management. Now, let’s re-visit the question – Is it sustainable? May be yes! The assumption here is that people like Lakshmi is delivering quality health care with accountability. One important factor of health care which gets addressed here is affordability of basic health care apart accessibility of health care services. This is also boosting local employment.
By use and adoption of affordable technologies these initiatives and programs could be a movement disrupting the primary health care systems. For Lakshmi to create value continuously for her community, she needs to be an effective point of care. She would need help with capturing and sharing of medical evidence, getting trained on new findings and in analyzing problems, disease management, follow instructions from Physicians, track her payments and reimbursements, receive mentoring, formally posing and evaluating solutions, making effective presentations and interacting with stakeholders.
100% Cloud-based, mobile accessible Technology Solution can help. Community edition of HealthOne, Health1Connect, built on Salesforce Platform makes the technology affordable and adoptable. Health1Connect connects skilled Doctors, Specialists, Pharmaceuticals & Medical Device Companies, Officials and Health Activists with Patient. The vision of the solution is around Patient Self Care to the remotest possible place over a mobile network.
Health1Connect built on Salesforce helps in achieving the following:
Active engaged community, and communities of community
- Connect to research team
- Platform for knowledge dissemination and management
- Chatter based networking tools
- Engage Community Health Care Workers and Patients alike
- Donation Management System
Lakshmi uses Health1Connect built on Salesforce platform for her needs. She along with her friends has done a one-time activity of entering the information about her community into the Health1Connect. This also helped Lakshmi to get connected to the community in one-on-one interaction. Every time there’s a need for medical attention, she proudly opens a case and captures her observation and tag with the diagnosis. Her cases are eventually a chatter feed for connected doctors and physicians. Villagers reach out to Lakshmi for scheduling of an appointment for networked doctors in nearby city.
Health1Connect is changing the way Primary Health Care Services are delivered in remote India. Our Consulting team on their Strategic Analysis reports devised guidelines, adoption techniques and methodology for these “Technology Solutions”. You can write them to know about their experiences and their assessment of impact and visible changes on-ground. Please feel free to query about Technology-Hand-Holding models developed for these scenarios. There’s no rocket science involved but when you help devise a system which works – it cometh with immense satisfaction and gratitude. And, when you touch upon people’s lives, by improving it, your purpose of life becomes even more worthwhile. We hope Raj and Lakshmi, inspire million others and change the face of health care – as we know it. More Power to them.
Give yourself a Karma boost – Please visit ‘Last Mile Health’ and make donation here.
*Full-Disclosure: FHW Approach Image used is Last Mile’s property and we are using it as a reference based on the research done on internet.