The Abia state government has set a new landmark in the history of the healthcare system in Nigeria through the introduction of the telehealth initiative also known as Dial a Doctor.
This initiative is regarded as the first of its kind in Nigeria, making it possible for every member of the community both in the rural and urban centres to access medical health care by dialling a dedicated GSM number and instantly get medical attention from a doctor from the very comfort of their homes.
Telehealth is the application of telecommunication technologies to healthcare. Telehealth is a platform that provides healthcare remotely by means of telecommunications technology.
The benefits of telehealth initiative are so enormous that it would cut the time spent travelling to see a doctor or waiting in line to see a doctor in a healthcare facility.
Speaking at the official commissioning of the initiative, Nigeria’s vice president; Professor Yemi Osinbajo commended Abia state government for the laudable project to better the lots of the people in the delivery of quality healthcare services. He further reiterated the Federal government’s commitment to improving the quality of the healthcare system.
Professor Osinbajo described the project as exciting, adding that it is leveraging on available technology, in this case, the mobile phone to deliver affordable healthcare to the people. Such technology would close the healthcare gap between the urban and rural areas.
Abia State governor Dr Okezie Ikpeazu described the initiative as “a dream come true” he said the initiative is “the future of healthcare delivery in Nigeria and Africa.” He added that the state government would leverage on the programme not only to improve life expectancy in Abia but surpass the average national life expectancy.
Below are four essential facts to note about Dial-a-Doctor:
- With a dial from your phone, you are connected to a doctor in any part of the State. You do not have to go through the queues at hospitals to get attention and sometimes the instant solution.
- Health centres offering the guide are monitored from a control unit while referrals are made through a simple phone in.
- With Dial-a-Doc-Direct, you don’t just walk across the road and buy drugs from just anybody in Abia, the initiative will give you the opportunity to speak to a medical doctor, and get prescriptions from the comfort of your home, office or farm.
- The Dial-a-Doc-Direct card is just N500 only.