by Curlan Campbell, NOW Grenada
- Health professionals trained on HIV/STI/TB Clinical Management Software
- System will help monitor and evaluate HIV/AIDS programmes
Grenada’s National Infectious Disease Control Unit (NIDCU), the Grenada Planned Parenthood Association (GPPA), and GrenCHAP will soon be able to operate under a new information management system that will seek to improve long-term HIV care.
The Ministry of Health, with funding from the Global Fund Grant has just concluded training of health professionals on how to use the HIV/STI/TB Clinical Management Software. This new computerised system replaces current paper-based information management systems which are now deemed inadequate in handling the information demands. It will be in the form of Electronic Medical Records (EMRs).
Dr Francis Martin, Senior Medical Officer in the Ministry of Health, said this system would help effectively monitor and evaluate HIV/AIDS programmes. “Under the current global fund grant that the OECS is implementing, one of the activities under that grant is the rollout of case-based surveillance for HIV/AIDS. This is really an HIV/AIDS management system and something that can be used to both monitor the treatment of and report on people who are HIV positive and people who have done an HIV test. It’s really like an electronic medical record, but it’s just specifically for HIV/AIDS to harmonise the response of the OECS islands for HIV/AIDS management.”
Dr Martin said the software will be implemented soon. “This is an opportunity for our Ministry of Health to collaborate with our OECS partners but also to collaborate locally because we have invested heavily in some civil society organisations that advocate for key populations, in particular, the Grenada Planned Parenthood Association and GrenCHAP. We actually plan on implementing the link for that software reporting system in those two organisations.”
Grenada’s health system Dr Martin said, stands to benefit greatly since a data warehouse will now be available for both primary and secondary information users to be able to extrapolate data for reporting and analysis. “The benefit to the health sector is one of accountability and the ability to monitor and evaluate treatment. There is a very clear strategy for the management of HIV and to do so we have to do more testing and to do more testing means that we have to get more equipment and resources and also put more people on treatment. This software gives us the opportunity to monitor the amount of testing being done, the treatment and their response to the treatment and at the same time allows us the ability to run reports almost instantaneously on the amount of tests we have conducted and amount of HIV patients we have, and be able to compare that with other islands.”
This project falls in line with the mandate by OECS Member States to eliminate HIV by 2030, using UNAIDS/WHO 90-90-90 continuum of HIV care targets.