ICTs for Health


SSI’s research in ICT for Health  began in earnest in 2008, based on our experience with using sophisticated, but low cost, information and communication technologies (ICTs) to support dengue epidemiology research in the Pediatric Dengue Vaccine Initiative project. Since then, we have been involved in 20+ eHealth and mHealth projects in Latin America (versión en Español) and we continue to help moderate several regional discussion groups and communities of practice for the use of low-cost (and often open-source) informatics tools, bringing together regional health informatics specialists to share lessons learned.

Click the following link to download a summary about OUR IMPACT. (EN ESPAÑOL)

In 2014 we ramped up to full speed on an exciting project – designing, developing, testing and fine-tuning a suite of tools to support early detection, surveillance and clinical management for dengue virus in Nicaragua. This project, one of the Dengue-FIRST projects that SSI is involved in supporting, is a collaboration with the MINSA Nicaragua and is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Fundación Carlos Slim para la Salud. The ICT tools included in this project are:

  1. DENGUE – A L E R T : An automated early-alert dashboard for enhanced detection and response (by multiple types of users) to dengue outbreaks. This tools COMPLEMENTS existing systems and incorporates information from a wide range of sources not currently incorporated into traditional surveillance systems in an efficient and direct way. Eventually, all priority diseases to be tracked at a national level will be incorporated into the ALERT system.
  2. DENGUE – L A B : An automated laboratory information management system to support sample management tracking and integration of results reporting for a network of national reference laboratories.
  3. DENGUE – S P E C I A L I S T : A mobile clinical decision support tool for doctors and nurses to facilitate hospitalized patient management with dengue. SPECIALIST is designed for use patient-side on tablets, cell phones, laptops, and/or ward-workstation laptops, depending on hardware available.

*Read more about the ICT Tools project on UCSF’s Global Health Sciences page here.

In addition to the Dengue-FIRST project, we’ve been supporting a range of research and direct service projects since 2007. To download a summary about our projects, click HERE. (EN ESPAÑOL).

IMG_3628MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH — We continue to collaborate with the PSI/PASMO organization in Nicaragua to study gestational diabetes in 3 hospitals in Managua — our team has built and continues to provide support for the research data collection tool (based on the CommCare platform) that includes a patient follow-up and monitoring mechanism directly connecting study participants with nutrition counselors

IMMUNIZATIONS — We are providing advisory support for the Pan American Health Organization’s (PAHO) Improving Data Quality for Immunizations (IDQi) Project — our team is supporting this regional Latin American advisory group to raise awareness of, interest in, and commitment to select strategies to: 1) better track facility performance via immunization coverage monitoring; 2) improve follow-up of un/under-immunized; and 3) foster linkages between immunization coverage and supply chain data

COMMUNITY HEALTH WORKERS — We continue to collaborate with the MINSA Nicaragua to support the adaptation and implementation of a mobile health tool for Community Health Workers (CHW) to help them with household data collection and community disease surveillance. This tool, called Vigilancia Comunitaria (based on the Open Data Kit Android) is being scaled up to 1000s of CHWs in several high priority departments in Nicaragua and is being used to track a wide range of health issues at the community level, including infectious and chronic diseases as well as prenatal health and family planning needs.

Contact us for more information or to explore collaboration opportunities!