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Digital mobile app to track, register coronavirus cases

By Hillary Mageka
Monday, July 13th, 2020
Health Cabinet secretary Mutahi Kagwe. Photo/Gerald Ithana
In summary

Hillary Mageka @benagitau

The Ministry of Health has  developed  a Covid-19 tracking app (Medic mobile), a primary data collection to provide both online and off-line data entry functionality.

The ministry has further adopted the use of mobile and web-based applications to collect data, monitor and respond to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

In addition, the ministry, through the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) has also embraced a surveillance system to monitor outbreak of the deadly virus across the 47 counties.

Already, 42 counties have recorded cases of coronavirus with Nairobi leading with  5,187 infections. 

Appearing before the Senate ICT Committee on Thursday, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, however, said EOC system used to monitor Coronavirus situation in the country initially before the cases escalated.

New disease

“As more and more cases were reported, so was the complexity of tracking contacts of Covid-19 cases. The existing system was quickly overwhelmed as it was ill-designed to meet the demands of the new disease,” Kagwe said.

Kagwe said the Medic mobile app supports contact tracers and rapid response teams to capture data for suspected cases using GPS functionality.   

According to the CS, national, county, sub-county teams to collect and transmit data from various teams synchronizing with Kenya EMR system to provide the overall national and county picture will use the app.

However, he said his ministry has partnered with WHO, ESRI and the palladium group to design porotypes of data collection platform based on the local context.

The prototype, according to him, is based on an existing platform used to collect HIV data.  

“The Kenya EMR-web based platform is able to register and track suspected cases countrywide.”

 The CS observed noting that the new the platform has been updated frequently to include clinical modules for investigations (laboratory orders), facilitate contact listing, follow up contacts of positive cases, manage quarantine sites and generate reports.

Kagwe appeared before the committee chaired by Baringo Senator Gideon Moi via Zoom to respond on deployment of technology in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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