HEALTH MANAGEMENT SYSTEM FOR TROPICAL DISEASES IN NIGERIA – complete project material



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Chapter
1:
Introduction

1.0   
Introduction
    

Healthcare
is an information intensive industry and healthcare professionals rely on
access to correct and comprehensive information, when and where they need it,
to inform the daily decisions they make about a person’s care. Information and
communications technology is largely absent from the way we generate, capture
and share health information as we continue our reliance on handwritten paper
records. To say that this reliance on paper is inefficient, wastes money and
scarce resources, and compromises patient safety and the quality of care is an
understatement. [1]In order to meet these challenges and ensure the
sustainability of healthcare, we need to change the way healthcare is funded
and delivered.

The
challenges facing healthcare, if not addressed appropriately and soon, will
become overwhelming. They call into question a nation’s ability to deliver
efficient, equitable, affordable, portable, universal, highly accessible and
safe, high quality healthcare. According to Professor Odusanya who
spoke on: “Improving Healthcare Service Delivery in Nigeria”. The time has
indeed come in the country to reconsider the content of healthcare services and
make it more accessible and continuous. Nigeria at this time needs a health
system that would reduce the number of people dying and as such, it is time
that corruption must be done away with and not found in the system at any level
of care [2].

Information
and communication technologies, ICT is used to describe a range of technologies
for gathering, storing, retrieving, processing, analyzing, and transmitting
information. Information is seen as a key element to achieving these
objectives, as is a workforce trained in the appropriate health information skills.
It is an unfortunate reality that healthcare is not as safe as it should be.
Adverse events and preventable errors that cause patient harm and death are
commonplace in healthcare. These errors are most often not the fault of
individuals, but of a system that fails to provide safe and effective care. The
cause of preventable errors can be traced to gaps in the flow of information
and communication failures both within organizations and across different
healthcare service providers. The personal cost of these errors is
immeasurable. ICT has helped in bridging distances and providing access to
clinical knowledge, specialized expertise and health services thus saving lives
and costs. ICT provides access to clinical information, Telemedicine, Online
Discussion groups and other tools. The need for reform of health sector and the
need for investment in, and deployment of e-health has been part of the
healthcare agenda for many years. These well documented challenges include
rising demand for healthcare services due to the ageing of the population, the
rise in chronic disease and increased consumer expectations; problems with
health workforce supply and distribution; inequity of access to services,
particularly amongst indigenous, rural and poor populations; quality and safety
concerns; and fragmented and limited ability to share information [1]

In
order to meet these challenges and ensure enhancement of existing health care
systems, deployment of health informatics/e-Health and interoperability among
health service providers cannot be overemphasized. Health informatics
which was
formerly known as
medical informatics
was defined
as the science that deals
with the use of computer and
communication technology to acquire, store, analyze, communicate, and display
medical/health information and knowledge to facilitate understanding and
improve the accuracy, timeliness, and reliability of decision making in health
care delivery system [3].

  1. Statement
    of the Problem

 The uncoordinated nature of data collection
and poor communication among those who collect and manage data seriously
hampers effective data collection and management in Nigeria health system; it is difficult to have up to date statistics on diseases,
so continuous monitoring is always a problem. Disease might be in an epidemic
state before any action is taken; with the apparently simple premise of
universal connectivity and accessibility which the Internet computing is
changing in the field of information systems, the Nigeria Health system still
lack’s behind; researchers, nongovernment organizations, volunteers, government
etc., has found it difficult to come to the aid of persons affected with
diseases or suggest proper ways to proffer solution due to lack of proper
records meant to be posted on a webpage through the Internet for easy access
irrespective of location.

1.2       Aim and Objectives of the Study

The
goal of this study is to develop a health management system for tropical
diseases in Nigeria. Specifically the objectives of this research are to:

1.
Design a health management system.

2. Create a database of selected
tropical disease generated from patient’s health records over time.

3. Develop a query system for the
database to obtain information about any tropical diseases of interest for the
purpose of research work.

4. Generate prevalence information on
any tropical disease through statistical analysis.

5.
Use the system as a benchmark for research and Health planning.

1.3       Significance
of the Study

 It helps in having quick Access to some
tropical diseases across Nigeria, for medical research and health planning; It
helps to identify regions or communities mostly affected by some tropical
diseases in Nigeria thereby attracting the attention of government or
nongovernmental organization to their aid; it gives the Government a focus on
Health strategic plan.; It enhances the need for prevention and treatment of
the affected person in the regions/communities; Since tropical diseases are
associated with poverty, poor sanitation etc, this study will help the
government to identify areas for poverty alleviation programme and the need to
improve environmental sanitation in the affected areas.

1.4       Scope and Limitation

This research work is designed to cover some selected tropical diseases in Nigeria generated from electronic health records of patients in various health facilities across Nigeria eg (Waritoma and Rahila Hospital Wukari, University of Nigeria Medical Centre Nsukka, Kwararafa Hospital  Wukari , University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital Enugu). The selected diseases include: African trpanosomiasis, chagas diseases, dengue fever, leishmaniasis, leprosy, lymphatic filariasis, filariasis, malaria, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis, helminthesis and also included are tuberculosis cholera, leprosy, yellow fever, human pathogenic avian influenza (Avian flu), polio HIV aids, lassa fever.

HEALTH MANAGEMENT SYSTEM FOR TROPICAL DISEASES IN NIGERIA


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