The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

4131.0: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - Table 10

Abstract #43544

Using the telemedicine technology to expand access to primary health care services: The case of South Africa

John H. Romani, PhD1, Barbara A. Anderson, PhD2, Johan A. van Zyl, BA3, Heston E. Phillips, PhD4, Marie Wentzel, MA3, and Khuli Tlabela, BA3. (1) School of Public Health, University of Michigan, 2670 Bedford Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48104-4010, 734 995-0667,, (2) Population Studies Center, Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan, 426 Thompson Street, Box 1248, Ann Arbor, MI 48106-1248, (3) Human Sciences Research Council, Private Bag X41, Pretoria, 0001, South Africa, (4) Department of Sociology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, 0002, South Africa

The government of South Africa in 1999 initiated a three phase program to create a national telemedicine system. (Gulube and Wynchank, 2001). The third phase of this endeavor, now underway, involves the establishment of telemedicine sites to meet rural health care needs. Coincident with this activity has been the development of a privately sponsored telemedicine arrangement linking community health nurses located in community pharmacies with a panel of physicians for the purpose of providing primary care via a telecommunications set up. This paper analyzes these two systems and their relative potential as cost-effective means to meet the commitment made in 1995 by the South African government to provide free primary care to mothers and children. Particular attention in the analysis is given to the human and social factors involved in the application of the telemedicine technology to the delivery of primary health services to remote rural and other underserved areas.

S.M. Gulube and S. Wynchank, “Telemedicine in South Africa: success or failure,” Journal of Telemedicine and Health Care. 2001. 7 (Supp. 2): 52: 47-49.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, the participant (learner) will be able to

Keywords: Telemedicine, Underserved Populations

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

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The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA