One of the main focus areas of Palliative Care Association of Uganda is ‘’being a central hub for data and information on Palliative Care service provision in Uganda’’. In a bid to achieve this objective, mHealth surveillance system has been introduced.
mHealth (mobile health) is the use of mobile devices such as phones, tablets, among others to improve health services. This is done by collecting, storing and regularly disseminating data to improve Palliative Care services in Uganda. This makes it easier for health service providers at PCAU to know statistically, how these services are being offered and more so helpful.
This has been made possible through PCAU’s partnership with the Center for Hospice Care/ Hospice Foundation from USA and the University of Notre Dame who have occasionally offered technical assistance. Great support has also been offered by Dr. Sheba Nyakaisiki from Uganda Martyrs University who has helped mostly with evaluations.
We collect monthly data on Palliative Care services from different health facilities using mobile android phones that have the ODK collect application installed. This happens every first Tuesday of the month. We have so far collected data from 10facilities/hospitals which include five (5) Regional Referral Hospitals (RRH) and five (5) Hospices.
The application we use to collect data is called ODK collect which is configured so that data can be sent to a particular server. This enables us to generate reports that are later used in decision making and continued study of Palliative Care services.
The application of mHealth is a timely and convenient way in which data can be collected.