Advances in research and the adoption of advanced health technologies have made it possible to better understand the intricacies of human health, which has led to increasingly effective solutions, not only to prevent, but also to treat diseases. In this regard, significant developments have been noted in Africa.
It must be said that everywhere, the integration of technology to improve the efficiency of care has become exponential. In fact, the market for software, hardware and services related to artificial intelligence in the health sector is expected to exceed $ 34 billion worldwide by 2025.
“To improve the quality of care through technology, Microsoft has decided to partner with organizations that have expertise in this area and to identify teams that share the same passions and ideas. This has allowed us to create a wide range of cloud-integrated tools and solutions that relate to many aspects related to the development and delivery of effective healthcare.“said Hicham Iraqi Houssaini, Country Director at Microsoft Morocco.
According to Africa Prosperity Report 2019/20, Morocco has the highest vaccination rates on the continent: it ranks 9th for prosperity among 54 African countries and 9th for health in general . Technology has all its role to play to further increase Morocco in this ranking. Already, and in order to improve the care provided to cancer patients, organizations such as the Lalla Salma foundation nonprofit turned to Microsoft Power BI, with which they were able to monitor and analyze the different data they collect, and use it thereafter to improve patient outcomes.
Created in 2005, the foundation aims to ensure that the fight against cancer will always be established as a public health priority. To do this, the foundation works in close collaboration with the Moroccan Ministry of Health, but also with the government agency that oversees health care in Morocco. Thanks to “Maisons de la vie”, a network of residential establishments spread across the country, Lalla Salma was able to support and welcome patients during their cancer treatment, offering them between 6,000 and 12,000 overnight stays per year, while giving them access to specialized care services.
Avoid bottlenecks and find solutions Providing timely and meaningful care to these patients is of crucial importance: it is the essence of the Homes for Life program. Upon further review, staff and volunteers realized that the old tools that had been used before were no longer effective enough to keep the program running smoothly. And for good reason, the staff had to collect too great a variety of data, such as occupancy rates, transfer times, delays between initial consultations, multidisciplinary meetings, treatment plans and types of medication for each patient.
Thanks to Power BI, each care team is now able to extract data very efficiently through a wide variety of sources, which are produced from databases, Excel spreadsheets and Word documents. . This software also greatly facilitated data tracking for the foundation’s IT staff. The tool also makes it possible to visualize the data available on dashboards and reports, while providing information which is updated in real time.
“Previously, to draw up dashboards, we had to collect data manually, on paper or with Excel files, and perform one by one all the calculations“says Soumaya Fatemi, computer engineer at the foundation.”It was taking an awful lot of time. Now, our dashboards are updated daily, and we no longer waste time summarizing the data. The software does it all for us!“.
Patients benefit mostThanks to the use of the Power BI solution, the staff at Lalla Salma were able to identify other problems related to the procedures and which up to now complicated the care processes which were brought to the patients. Detailed knowledge of the types of drugs used by the centers and their needs has enabled staff to better refine their services. It also provided useful lessons that helped provide patients with the drugs they needed to treat them even faster.
“Thanks to this tool, we are able to know in detail the actual consumption levels of drugs by type of cancer and by therapeutic protocol.“says Fakhkhari.”We are now able to rationalize our budgets, but also to better plan our drug orders and better manage our stocks and resources, which allows us to treat more patients.“.
The Power BI solution also optimizes the hours worked by unpaid civil servants. Dashboards display the hours worked by each volunteer and the different tasks accomplished; this allows you to be constantly informed about what type of assistance is needed. Likewise, when the dashboard reveals a shortage of volunteers, staff can automatically recruit to fill any gaps.
“As the continent continues to evolve towards digital transformation, we hope to see more integration and success through technology; to do this, we continue to work closely with partners and clients across the industry to ensure practitioners and patients are able to achieve and receive more“, concludes Mr. Houssaini.