An Assessment of Health Information Management Infrastructures for Communication in the Matabeleland South Region Border-line Health Institutions in Zimbabwe
Background and Purpose: Developing countries face the challenge of providing quality healthcare to rapidly increasing populations without adequate infrastructure. Health information management infrastructures are important for the smooth flow of important health information required for efficient service delivery. They form the essential physical, logical and intellectual link that facilitates the provision of health care services for a country. This study was carried out to assess the health information management infrastructures for communication in the Matabeleland South Province of Zimbabwe, particularly focusing on border line health facilities that stretch from Southern boarders with Mozambique, South Africa and Botswana.
Methods: The researchers employed an exploratory survey research strategy through the use of observation and structured interviews. Elements from the eHealth Architecture Model (eHAM) developed by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO TR 14639)  as a roadmap tool for capacity based eHealth architecture were used as guiding principles.
Results: The researchers identified that there is a wide spread lack of health communication technology, particularly computers and related technology. Health staff capacity to process information and communication is low and information management infrastructures are dilapidated.
Conclusions: Health information management infrastructures for communication in the area studied are inadequate, and underserviced. This is coupled by a low quality in data and service delivery mainly due to lowly qualified staff and dilapidated information management infrastructure. Current researchers recommend the use of computers, related technology and improvement of communication connectivity solutions, staff capacity and servicing of information management infrastructure to improve health communication efficiency.
Keywords: Health information management infrastructures, Health communication infrastructures, Remote health centres
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