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Mobilising Data Collection in The Fight Against HIV/AIDS

Published 2021-07-05 06:12:42

 

As the world enters its first vaccination cycle in the race to end COVID-19, countries across the globe continue to grapple with the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Despite gains in the availability and quality of HIV strategic information, challenges remain in collecting and monitoring key data that are required to achieve the UNAIDS 95-95-95 goal to end the HIV epidemic by 2030.

Currently, health systems in Southern Africa are faced with a plethora of burdens that make accurate and timely reporting of HIV data difficult. Factors such as poorly organised clinical procedures and reporting systems, outdated paper-based data collection methods, and logistical barriers to receiving HIV care contribute to the inability of health programmes to effectively implement HIV prevention and treatment strategies.

In order to roll out high impact HIV programmes that reach marginalised and rural communities, community healthcare workers and counsellors need to be equipped with mobile technology that eliminates paper-based data collection processes, improves their capacity to treat patients, and reduces the occurrence of human error in environments where they operate in stressful or overcrowded conditions.

In our commitment to helping the world achieve the UNAIDS 95-95-95 goals, our Lynx-mHealth system is designed as a high-performance, mobile data collection and clinical tool to aid community healthcare workers in collecting quality HIV data that supports HIV interventions, effective monitoring and evaluation, and data-driven decision-making. With Lynx-mHealth, community healthcare workers can maximise the number of patients they support and digitise point of care data collection for maximum efficiency.

In an article published by The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), community-based testing and community mobilisation for testing were highlighted as key fast-track responses to engaging affected populations and collecting accurate data. Using Lynx-mHealth, community healthcare workers can mobilise HIV testing and counselling using a user-friendly system that operates on Android mobile- and tablet devices. Because Lynx-mHealth is a fully digitised solution, manual tasks such as recording patient details and conducting rapid HIV tests can be completed using one system. This way, activities that traditionally take 60 seconds to complete on paper can be completed in half the time with the tap of a screen.

The system also features an offline mode that enables users to collect data in the absence of an internet connection. All data that is collected using Lynx-mHealth is securely stored and encrypted to protect sensitive patient information, adhering to POPI Act regulations. GPS positioning enables Lynx-mHealth to utilise real-time satellite positioning to ensure that collected data is linked to the correct site or location. Once an internet connection is established, the system automatically synchs patient data to our secure Microsoft Azure hyper-cloud servers, where it is validated and used to prepare dynamic and static reports for near real-time programme monitoring and evaluation.  

Lynx-Health is currently deployed in various healthcare programmes across Southern Africa and has supported millions of HIV tests. If you are interested in learning more about how Lynx-mHealth strengthens HIV care data collection, please contact us at +27 12 111 7000.

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Qode Health Solutions is a private company registered in South Africa with the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CPC). Qode's majority share holders is vested in Non-profit organisations and fall part of one of 4 group technology-based companies located in Gauteng.