Full Paper download available at International Journal of Computing and ICT Research http://www.ijcir.org/volume3-number2/.

2008, I was thinking ICT and the Health sector and i had my hands full with an Health Information Databank, An E-Health Model for the Health Sector and Web Services Initiative for Data Sharing and Usage. Well this one is on the Data Bank idea of collating and managing related data within the Health practitioners.

Abstract

The development of web based database systems for service industries has led to a remarkable new dimension of information retrieval and distribution. These developments allow service industries to make information readily available almost at no cost to the general public. This paper discusses the use of web based database systems to accommodate the health care industry data. Presently, the health care information system in Nigeria consist of series of scattered inter-related data from different health sources and service centres, The Internet being a global village was used as a tool to solve this information problem by capturing all these related data into a data repository online where it can be accessed as information. The design uses the three-tier web model architecture as its underlying technology and presents an Information databank capable of storing health care data…..

Introduction

The Health Care Industry in Nigeria unlike developed countries in Europe and North America is a growing one. This is obvious in the unavailability of medical care, functional health care system and the attention paid on health services by the public and private sectors. However, in the last decade, major improvements were witnessed in this sector in Nigeria and Africa at large. These improvements are made evident in the restructured modalities of the Nation’s Health Care systems vis the changing pace of health services delivery, increased competence of Medical Practitioners, availability of medical resources and many others.

Health care information system has been defined by Shortliffe and Perreault (2001) as a field of study concerned with the broad range of issues in the management and use of biomedical information, including medical computing and the study of the nature of medical information itself. If physiology literally means ‘the logic of life’, and pathology is ‘the logic of disease’, then health informatics is the logic of healthcare which is the science that studies the use and processing of data, information, and knowledge applied to medicine, health care and public health (van Bemmel and Musen, 1997).

Problem Definition

In Nigeria, several factors undermine the effective delivery of the Health Care System. These include lack of funds, lack of health services, insufficient expertise/professionals and above all lack of information of the few places where particular professional services are being delivered. On the issue of
Inadequate Information which is what this paper addresses, Patients and people needing health services are sometimes driven into uncertainty when they are in need of some particular services. It is an accepted fact that the nations health system does not have everything yet but the problem is not really the inadequacy of the health services available, it is more of lack of information of where they can access the little services available.
However, it is not sufficient to say that the nations system does not have this data; it is more of a problem of how majority of the people can have access to this information. The media, advert houses and the newspapers have played their role but as there is limit to their capacity in providing the required health
information to the citizen. Thus, how do we decentralize this few health service information and make it available to the general public?

Conclusion

This paper presents a technology of improving the health care industry information system with the development of an information databank. Prototype databases was proposed and developed to house health
system related data such as health practitioners, health service providers, health schemes e.t.c.; and make it available to the general public via an online system (the internet). If the system is well deployed and managed properly, it will present the capacity of the health industry to the people in a more clearer and readable format.

The advantages of this application when implemented are enormous. These include the presentation of a system that can help the health industry save resources, help the people (public) save time and resources with the availability of timely information of what, where and how about health care services  around them. It also presents the government and the health Industry administration a easier medium of gathering heath statistics both at the practitioner level and the service level. This system as it were also presents to the health industry market an avenue to render its services on a much larger scale and thus improving health businesses while bridging the gap between patients and health professionals.

Full Paper download available at International Journal of Computing and ICT Research http://www.ijcir.org/volume3-number2/.