The open medical record system has greatly aided Kabarole District in the fight against HIV/Aids, according to the district health officer, Dr Richard Mugahi.
The system that has computers powered by solar panels, was launched in the district in August 2016 as a pilot project in the country.
Makerere University School of Public Health through Monitoring and Evaluation Technical Support (METS) programme, donated the solar panel systems and computers worth Shs97 million to 19 health facilities in the district.
“We are now able to generate an HIV/Aids list of clients electronically, as opposed to the old system where we had volumes of paper records,” said Dr Mugahi.
According to Prof Anthony Mbonye, the director general health services, “Uganda is among the first few countries in Africa to implement this programme and Kabarole is the first in the country”
Dr Mugahi said, “The computes have helped us to use the finger print technology to ease identification of the clients who are already on treatment.”
Kabarole District has the highest HIV prevalence rate of 11.3 per cent, which is higher than the national rate at 7.3 per cent.
Asked whether in the last seven months they have been able to come up with the correct statistics of the HIV/Aids patients in the district, Dr Mugahi said, “No, the project doesn’t cover the district but we have so far extended it to Kibiito Health Centre III”
“The system has helped the patients to access the services at any health centre where the system has been installed since the data is shared. When we open the system, it shows us the patients due for treatment on that particular day and we follow them,” Dr Mugahi explained.
He said with the new strategy of “Test and treat” the new system will help a lot in the fight against HIV/Aids in the district.
Dr Mugahi added, “We are now at the stage of training staff on the use of figure print technology before we expand the services to other health centres in the district.”