Namibia: Computerised Health Records On Track

Computing

The Ministry of Health recently advertised a tender for the supply of computer equipment for hospitals in Oshakati, Rundu, Keetmanshoop and Windhoek as part of the implementation of the E-Health system.

According to information in the Tender Bulletin, the value of the submissions ranges between N$4,2 million and N$10,1 million.

Health Ministry Permanent Secretary (PS) Kahijoro Kahuure has confirmed that the equipment is intended for the implementation and use of the ministry's Integrated Health Care Information Management System (IHCIMS), also known as the E-Health System.

Last year Health Minister Richard Kamwi launched the E-Health system in Windhoek at the Windhoek Central Hospital, and said that the system will play a significant role in the delivery of healthcare services.

According to tender specifications, submissions were to be made for the supply of 340 desktop personal computers (PCs) and 95 laptops. 180 PCs and 45 laptops are intended for Oshakati, 60 PCs and 20 laptops are intended for Keetmanshoop and 100 PCs and 30 laptops are intended for Rundu.

This means that no new PCs or laptops will be assigned to the Windhoek Central and Katutura hospitals.

The implementation of the E-Health system comes at a cost of N$54,3 million over a three-year period, and Kahuure said that "the system development and implementation cost for Windhoek Central and Katutura hospitals as a pilot project is N$9,2 million".

Kahuure said in addition to this the Namibian Government has received a grant of US$5 million (N$37,7 million) from the Indian government.

"A portion of this grant will be used to supply computer hardware, servers, printers and other related peripheral devices which will cater for hospitals across the country," Kahuure said.

He said that a tender for the procurement of this equipment was advertised in India and has closed, and that the equipment is expected in Namibia in either June or July this year.

According to Kahuure, the network infrastructure and computer equipment cost is estimated to be N$30 million, but added that it is not to be used exclusively for the E-Health system.

The implementation of the E-Health system will be carried out over three phases, Kahuure said, adding that the first phase is the pilot project currently underway at the two State hospitals in Windhoek.

In the second phase the E-Health system will be extended to 14 hospitals which will start in May this year and will conclude in April 2013. The third phase is expected to start in May 2013 and by "March 2014 all 34 hospitals will be completed and they will be operating as 100 per cent paperless hospitals."

Kahuure said that 85 per cent of the "system modules" are up and running at the Windhoek Central Hospital and it is expected that the system will be 100 per cent operational by the end of April this year.