ICT Framework to Support a Patient-Centric approach in Public Healthcare
A Case Study of Malawi
Keywords:Patient-centric, Patient-centred, ICT Framework, Malawi, Public health sector
Although Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in the healthcare sector are extensively deployed globally, they are not used effectively in developing countries. Many resource poor countries face numerous challenges in implementing the ICT interventions. For instance, many health applications that have been deployed are not user-centric. As a result, such ICT interventions do not benefit many health consumers. The lack of an ICT framework to support patient-centric healthcare services in Malawi renders the e-health and mhealth interventions less sustainable and less cost effective. The aim of the study was therefore to develop an ICT Framework that could support patient-centric healthcare services in the public health sector in Malawi. The comprehensive literature review and semi-structured interviews highlighted many challenges underlying ICT development in Malawi. An ICT framework for patient-centric healthcare services is therefore proposed to ensure that eHealth and mobile health interventions are more sustainable and cost effective. The framework was validated by five experts selected from different areas of expertise including mhealth application developers, ICT policy makers and public health practitioners. Results show that the framework is relevant, useful and applicable within the setting of Malawi. The framework can also be implemented in various countries with similar settings.