Mobile health initiative expands with global focus

Healthcare providers in some of the most underserved parts of the world are slated to receive some much needed medical support after Health eVillages announced today a new initiative that will deliver medical education via smartphone devices to clinicians in these remote areas.

This new initiative will be introduced in one of Health eVillages' largest pilot locations, the Kenya-based Kijabe Hospital, a teaching institution that each month treats some 10,000 patients who travel to the facility from all across East Africa. Kijabe Hospital regularly conducts training sessions for its medical staff of 100, providing a venue to build on medical knowledge for its various in-and outpatient services ranging from general and orthopedic surgery to neonatal and HIV care.

Donato Tramuto, founder of Health eVillages and CEO and Vice Chairman of Physicians Interactive, says the initiative began after Senator Bill Frist connected Health eVillages with Mark Newton, MD, at Vanderbilt who spends 40 weeks per year in Kenya working at Kijabe Hospital.

"We realized that, painfully, one of the challenges [Newton] was facing in that community was the reality of medical students – who were trying to get trained to be physicians or medical support personnel – that the textbooks they were using were outdated; they were 60, 70, 80 years old."

"The quantity was even more surprising," Tramuto adds, with some six medical reference books being shared among 30 students.

After Health eVillages began this medical education initiative for clinicians in Kenya, Tramuto recalls a memorable success story involving a nurse practitioner who was worried that a pregnant 15-year-old was going to deliver a baby who wasn't breathing. That morning, the nurse practitioner was able to view an educational medical video on infant resuscitation, resource that was previously never available. Later that day, when the baby was born, not breathing as expected, the nurse practitioner was able to save the newborn's life because of the education he received hours earlier.

The mother sitting adjacent to the nurse practitioner who is holding the baby he saved

by help of the medical education he received.

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