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eHealth Africa and Viderum Demonstrate How GIS technology Can Save Lives
At their latest meetup, eHealth Africa partnered with Viderum to demonstrate how data collection, curation, and visualization tools can be used to improve health outcomes.
BERLIN, Germany — September 20, 2018 — eHealth Africa (eHA) and Viderum hosted “Connecting the Dots — Geodata in Healthcare,” a meetup on the use of GIS technology to improve health outcomes, on the evening of Wednesday, September 19. They welcomed attendees to the co.up co-working space for the second in a series of technology and global health meetups hosted by the Germany-based eHA office since its establishment in 2017.
eHA’s Director of Global Health Informatics, Dave Henry, discussed the effort to eradicate polio, which is still considered endemic in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Nigeria, largely due to the challenge that conflict and poverty pose to vaccination coverage. For polio, where immunization requires at least three vaccine doses within one year, GIS technology has become indispensable for locating, reaching, and vaccinating children in hard-to-find settlements. At the meetup, eHA’s Adam Butler discussed the tools the organization developed to address these challenges, and demonstrated how GPS-enabled devices can capture coordinates of points of interest. Geodata on health facilities, settlements, and roads dramatically strengthen public health interventions such as vaccination campaigns or emergency responses.
The eHA demonstration focused on their tool Gather, built for secure, real-time, spatially-enabled data collection and map-plotting, which was recently used in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to conduct a microcensus in the regions of Kinshasa and Bandundu. Viderum’s CTO Marko Bocevski demonstrated the technology they developed to enable the visualization and analysis of collected data. This tool, which can be connected to Gather, better equips public officials for data-driven decision making, project planning and implementation.
Dave Henry said of the relationship between eHA and Viderum, "Our partnership has strengthened over the last year as we’ve collaborated on the Gather solution for curated data collection and publication to CKAN. We look forward to 2019 and new opportunities to expand the use of Open Data Portals in global public health."
Johanna Roegele, the Managing Director for eHA Germany, explained the motivation behind the quarterly events, “We strongly believe in the work we do and leveraging technology for the global good. We organize these meetups as a forum to share that excitement with Berlin’s tech and global health communities, and create opportunities for innovative organizations that share a similar vision to partner and learn from each other.”
Information on upcoming eHA meetups can be found on their various social media platforms. More information on eHealth Africa can be found at www.ehealthafrica.org.