Events & Press

COVID-19 DHIS2 TRACKER

During this COVID-19 pandemic it is especially important that we, individuals and organizations, use our strengths to help the community. 

At eSHIFT we have spent the last 8 years launching digital health surveillance platforms in some of the worlds most vulnerable communities. Our AoS Health partners, Blue Frontier, have spent the last 15 years working on Digital Design and Development across various fields and sectors.  Through their work in connected health they have connected the diagnostic devices that are currently being used worldwide in diagnosing COVID-19.

With the spread of COVID-19, the AoS Health Platform has been enhanced to include deployments of the COVID-19 DHIS2 Tracker recently developed by the Sri Lankan MoH and University of Oslo DHIS2 teams.This can be deployed on existing platforms already running our TB or AMR solutions, or alternatively can be deployed on a new dedicated COVID-19 system either in-country on one of our “Pandora” installations, or alternatively hosted in a secure datacentre in Switzerland.

One government has already requested for the COVID-19 DHIS2 Tracker to be quickly deployed into their existing AoS Health Platform for AMR. This was completed in a matter of days allowing local stakeholders to immediately evaluate the tool for their surveillance needs. We expect data collection activities to begin this week.

If your organization needs help with COVID-19 tracking please reach out at covid19@aos.health.  We are happy to help in any way we can. 

March 20, 2020

SALLY STANSFIELD JOINS THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

The eSHIFT Partner Network is pleased to welcome Dr. Sally Stansfield to its Board of Directors.  Dr. Stansfield is a globally recognized leader in public health and development and brings more than 30 years of expertise in health systems strengthening, with a focus on health information, communication, and technology; data maximization; metrics for evaluation; and information technology governance.  She has designed and managed programmes for the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the US Agency for International Development and Canada’s International Development Research Centre and has advised governments primarily in Africa and Asia.

March 9, 2020

ONE HEALTH SURVEILLANCE PLATFORM FOR ANTIMICROBIAL RESISTANCE LAUNCHED IN ZAMBIA 

– One Health Surveillance Platform for Antimicrobial Resistance launched by FIND and the Antimicrobial Resistance Coordination Committee (AMRCC) through the Zambia National Public Health Institute (ZNPHI), on the sidelines of the Pan-Africa Workshop on Effective Implementation of a National Action Plan on AMR 

– The platform, developed in collaboration with Blue Frontier and eShift, enables data-driven decision making to tackle AMR in Zambia and beyond 

Geneva, Switzerland & Lusaka, Zambia – 3 February 2020 – The Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) and the Zambia National Public Health Institute (ZNPHI) announced today the launch of the Zambia One Health Surveillance Platform for Antimicrobial Resistance, developed in collaboration with Blue Frontier and the eSHIFT Partner Network (eSHIFT). The platform was launched during a special event organized on the sidelines of the 3-day Pan-Africa Workshop on Effective Implementation of a National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance, in Lusaka, Zambia, 22–24 January 2020. The workshop itself was organized by the Antimicrobial Resistance Coordination Committee (AMRCC) through ZNPHI, under the country’s health ministry, and the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a non-profit based in New Delhi, India.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) develops when microorganisms (such as bacteria, viruses and some parasites) evolve to stop antimicrobial treatments (including antibiotics, antivirals and antimalarial drugs) from working. As a result, essential treatments become ineffective. AMR, particularly antibiotic resistance, is a global public health threat known to impact healthcare, food safety, nutrition security, livelihood and the attainment of several UN Sustainable Development Goals. The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified AMR as one of the 12 global health challenges in 2020.1

‘One Health’ is an approach to designing and implementing programmes, policies, legislation and research in which multiple sectors communicate and work together to achieve better public health outcomes. In Zambia, the One Health Surveillance Platform aims to improve data collection, analysis and data quality in laboratories and different sectors of the Zambian economy, through creation of connected surveillance tools that track and map the emergence of resistance, form the basis of national surveillance programmes, and enable the Zambian government to make data-driven decisions. The platform was designed to ensure burden-free implementation for health workers, no new data silos, and long-term sustainability.

Additionally, the One Health surveillance platform enables each sector (human, animal, etc.) to have an intra-sectoral view of resistance patterns while also enabling a collated, comprehensive view of One Health surveillance data at a national level.

Speaking at the launch event, Dr Victor Mukonka, Director ZNPHI/Chairman AMRCC, commented that Zambia has long recognized the critical need for timely, relevant and reliable health data to support evidence-based decision making. He said: “As a nation, we have a number of already established data sources but have until now lacked a systematic approach towards the collection and analysis of this data for effective and meaningful decisions. It is therefore gratifying to note that we are the first country to put in place this interoperable One Health data management system that will help capture reliable data, which is critical to inform how we as a country can carry out actionable steps to address the growing threat of AMR”.

Catharina Boehme, CEO of FIND, said: “Effective use of data at local, regional and global levels is key to tackling AMR. This platform will enable improved, automated surveillance that can inform decision-making and enable proactive responses to AMR-related threats at a local level, as well as feeding into national strategies and implementation programmes. Further, it lays the foundations for interconnected data systems that could improve disease surveillance beyond AMR – to identify and monitor outbreaks, for example – and enhance clinical care.”

This project is supported by the UK Department of Health and Social Care’s Global AMR Innovation Fund (GAMRIF). GAMRIF is an Official Development Assistance (ODA) fund which allocates funding for projects that promote the welfare and economic development of low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). GAMRIF’s funding supports FIND’s work to enhance the impact of diagnostic tools for AMR, to support improved AMR surveillance and antibiotic stewardship.

Dame Sally Davies, UK Special Envoy on Antimicrobial Resistance, said: “Addressing the rising number of drug-resistant infections requires global action if we are to successfully contain and control the threat AMR poses to modern medicine, food security, animal welfare and the economy and achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in these areas. We need more data on how antibiotics are used in both humans and animals to fully understand the scale of the threat of AMR. But we still do not have robust AMR surveillance systems in over 50% of African countries. This platform represents an exciting opportunity to improve surveillance in Zambia so we that we can develop sustainable strategies to control it. I’m delighted that the work we are supporting FIND to do through this project directly complements other UK Aid investments in Zambia, including through the Fleming Fund and Public Health England’s activities to strengthen Zambia’s capacity in epidemic preparedness.”

Dr Nathan Bakyaita, WHO Country Representative for Zambia, said: “WHO is committed to ensuring safe, efficacious antimicrobials, based on the organization’s vision of a world in which all people attain the highest possible level of health, with a mission to promote health, keep the world safe and serve the vulnerable. Since 2015, the World Health Organization has supported the Global Antimicrobial Surveillance System (GLASS) in support of the Global Action Plan on AMR. The objective of GLASS is to support global surveillance and research to strengthen the evidence base on AMR and help inform decision-making. GLASS provides a standardized approach to the collection, analysis, and sharing of AMR data, which includes epidemiological, clinical, and microbiological data and, since 2019, includes data on

antimicrobial consumption. In 2020, eighty-seven (87) countries including, Zambia have been enrolled in GLASS. We are happy that Zambia has taken a step to develop a one health data management system that will make it even easier to submit AMR data to GLASS.”

James Fry, Managing Director of Blue Frontier, said: “The opportunity to work on this project is extraordinary for us – it is this work that our team finds most motivating and rewarding. It has been great to work with our partners, FIND and eSHIFT, and we are proud to be able to introduce our new, open source, inter-operability platform ‘Open Interop’ as part of our commitment to support low-cost, sustainable, healthcare solutions.”

Steven Uggowitzer, President, eSHIFT Partner Network, said: “eSHIFT is proud to have partnered with FIND and Blue Frontier on this groundbreaking project. By using best-in-class engineering to meet the data collection and analysis challenges of AMR we were able to create truly robust systems for Zambia which we hope can then by leveraged by other countries facing the same challenges, and turn into a global good.”

Following the launch event, at least four other countries in Africa have expressed interest in implementing a similar AMR surveillance system.

About the One Health Surveillance Platform 

The One Health Surveillance Platform is one part of an emerging managed distribution of software and services, called AoS Health. AoS Health is an orchestrated suite of tools and services capable of data collection, interoperability between internal and existing client systems, as well as data analytics and warehousing. All of the different elements of the platform come together in a ready-to-use hardware (Pandora), thereby abstracting the technological complexities and empowering national health systems leaders and healthcare providers to build best-in-class data management systems quickly. This enables the development of data-led programmes to improve health outcomes in their communities.

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1 World Health Organization. Urgent health challenges for the next decade. 13 January 2020. https://www.who.int/news-room/photo-story/photo-story-detail/urgent-health-challenges-for-the-next-decade (accessed 27 January 2020)

3 February 2020

POSTPONED TILL OCTOBER 2020

Developing National Digital Health Policy and Strategy: Laying the Foundations – Stone Town, Zanzibar – March 23-27, 2020

By popular demand, a fourth session of the Digital Health Policy & Strategy Course will be held in Stone Town, Zanzibar from 23-27 March 2020.  This intensive, five-day course focuses on the foundational issues that enable effective digital health. Participants return to their workplace feeling confident in being able to make evidence-based evaluations of digital health challenges and able to explain to managers, peers and subordinates how best to leverage digital technologies to the benefit of the health systems they are engaged with.

Who should take this course?

This course is intended for policy advisers, decision makers, government officials and development partners. You may work in a governmental or implementing agency, in the public sector in general or for a development program and you are in charge of, or engaged in, the development of digital health strategies. Having this mix helps clarify and challenge participants’ perspectives.

What will I learn?

The course is based on practical knowledge of key health issues:

  • understanding how digital health strengthens health systems
  • developing digital health strategies
  • enabling digital health systems to work together
  • managing behavioral change

Who are the trainers?

The lead trainers, Dr Peter Drury and Mr Michael Stahl, have extensive experience of digital health policy and implementation, in transitional and developing countries. Their approach to training is to offer a rich mix of:

  • presentations
  • group exercises
  • reflection activities
  • discussions

Learn more and register here.

March 23-27, 2020

Global Digital Development Summit – Geneva, Switzerland

“Thanks to everyone who has contributed to organizing this- it was such a valuable time to spend with a very interesting group of people. I’ve learnt a lot that I will be taking back with me! ” – GDDS attendee

eSHIFT co-hosted the three-day Global Digital Development Summit in Geneva, Switzerland from October 23-30, 2019.

Over 100 participants from iNGOs, international agencies, governments, and the private sector came together to discuss real life case studies, explore emerging technologies such as machine learning and artificial intelligence, and gain an understanding of the policy landscape across countries and donors.   The conference was a tremendous success and we plan on organizing another summit in 2020.

October 28-30, 2019

Digital Health Policy Course – Geneva, Switzerland

Enlighting, de-mystifying, great networking opportunities” – Course Attendee

eSHIFT hosted a digital health policy course for policy advisors, decision makers, government officials and development partners in Geneva, Switzerland from September 23rd to 27th, 2019

The five-day course focused on the foundational issues that enable effective digital health. It was based on practical knowledge of key digital health issues, in particular: understanding how digital health strengthens health systems, developing digital health strategies, enabling digital health systems to work together, and managing behavioural change. The combination of the practical and policy experience of the trainers, together with what participants brought from their national and local experiences provided a unique blend of knowledge and created a quality learning and collaborative environment.

September 23-27, 2019