Amref Health Africa and Busia County Government sign agreement for Digital Health Villages

Amref Health Africa in Kenya and Samsung have launched a one-of-a-kind project in Busia County that will see the establishment and installation of a Digital Health Village – a solution that will use solar power to improve the lives of the county’s residents.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for implementation of the project was signed on December 15, 2015 by the Country Director for Amref Health Africa in Kenya, Dr Meshack Ndirangu, and Busia Governor Mr Sospeter Ojaamong at the Busia county governor’s office.

The digital health project is an innovation which has several components including solar powered internet schools, solar power generator, solar power health centre and a telemedicine centre. It will be implemented over a period of two years beginning January 2016. The innovation will provide a learning platform for telemedicine and youth empowerment through computer literacy.

Dr Ndirangu noted that the project was intended to improve medical diagnostics in a rural health facility and to implement a set of youth empowerment models through a solar-powered digital school.

"This project bridges the digital divide in the rural areas and pays specific attention to solutions which are cost-effective, mobile, and easy to set up and which are suited to harsh climatic conditions." -Dr Meshack Ndirangu

On Amref Health Africa’s partnership with Busia County, Dr Ndirangu said: “Amref Health Africa mission ‘improve the health of people in Africa by partnering with and empowering communities, and strengthening health systems’ well the Busia County Government’s endeavour to improve the health and welfare of its people.”

Mr Martin Kafwa, CEC Member for Health and Sanitation, Dr George Kimathi, Head of Water Sanitation and Hygiene programme, Amref Health Africa in Kenya, and Mr Alex George Etyang, Legal Advisor/Advocate of High Court of Kenya were among those who witnessed the signing of MOU.

Mr Ojaamong said that the County Government of Busia had allocated space at Amukura Health Centre for hosting the project. “We shall ensure the security and sustainability of the project is observed even beyond the two-year subsidy period,” he said.

Mr Ojaamong said that the project will greatly support the fulfilment of the objectives of the Busia County Health Strategic Plan. He commended Amref Health Africa in Kenya for being an effective partner in Busia County by supporting health projects that address Malaria, TB, Water Sanitation and Hygiene and encouraged other organisations to invest in the county.