Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, has advised Nigerians to embrace Information Communication Technology (ICT) in healthcare services in Nigeria to access better healthcare.
He said ICT could also boost innovation and financing mechanism, such as health insurance, quality and standards in the healthcare delivery system.
The commissioner made this call at the 2022 Africa Digital Health Summit (ADHS), with the theme: Moving from rhetoric to action; leveraging technology to democratise healthcare. The sub-theme was: Health system digitisation: Translating strategies to impact. The event was held at Marriot Hotel, Government Reserved Area (GRA) Ikeja, Lagos.
Abayomi said the government was able to contain COVID-19 pandemic with the use of ICT at the healthcare facilities in Lagos, adding that there was the need for all healthcare stakeholders to adapt digital health to ensure universal healthcare coverage for all in Nigeria.
Chairman, Organising Committee of the programme, Dr. Niyi Osamiluyi, said ADHS was birthed out of the desire to create a platform for innovators, regulators, policy makers and development partners to share knowledge and best practices in digital health around the continent.
He said while poor access to healthcare, predominant out-of-pocket payment and a lack of accountability continue to be common problems in the sector across Africa, technology wielded the power to remove all obstacles and frictions, which prevent access to healthcare for all.
Osamiluyi explained that democratisation of healthcare implied accessibility, affordability and accountability.
He added that in the next two years, key stakeholders, opinion leaders and experts would be discussing the role of technology in healthcare through keynote addresses, fireside chat panels, discussions and symposia.
He said the organising committee was excited by both the quality and number of abstracts received this year.
“We are convinced that these abstracts will contribute to the development of digital health. If you are a researcher, innovator, entrepreneur or international non-government organisation (NGO), I encourage you to submit an abstract for review or take a development partner or foundation to fund digital health innovations or interventions across Africa. I invite you to talk to us when we start planning for the 2023 ADHS.”