A study to assess the feasibility of HDA app; a health facility verification system intended for implementation in Uganda

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Kampala international international: School of Health Sciences
Background: The Health Directory and Authentication App (HDA App), is composed of systems i.e. Drug Information and Verification System (DIVS) and Health Facility Verification System (HFVS). It is an m-Health innovation designed to provide offline information and verification of all medicines. Health facilities and health professionals (HPs) for the general public/consumers. It was designed as an initiative to improve quality and safety of health care services in Uganda by promoting Rational Medicine Use (RMU) through an improved access to patients' medicine information/counselling. HDA App concurrently reduces both professional misconduct and the prevalence of illegal health workers and health facilities through a government- public partnership and similarly, it facilitates removal of unsafe medicines (expired. recalled, banned including potentially substandard/counterfeits etc.) from the market. It is designed to improve public- government collaboration in implementing other regulatory functions through an inbuilt its feedback mechanism. Study aims: The feasibility study of the HFVS was aimed at I) developing a working prototype out of I-IDA Concept, and then use it to 2) assess the level of acceptability and usability of the 1-IFVS and 3) determine the challenges which may be associated with its implementation and use. Methodology: Study participants were key informants who included health professionals. IT specialists whose percentage composition were: from a) public health facilities (n ~ 17: I 9.5%). b) private health facilities (n~I9; 24. %), c) NGO (n~l7: 23.0%), e) regulatory body (n ~ 8; 12.6%). f) professional associations (n=.; 2.3%) and n•om g) general public (n ~ 14; 18.4%). A qualitative exploratory study involved use of an introductory video, a hands-on demonstration of the App using a prototype and both open and closed ended questions were used to obtain responses in a questionnaire guided interview. SPSS Version 20 was used for data analysis. Findings: 1-IDA App built was interoperable, allowing synchronization with other existing health sector systems. It was revealed that the HFVS component of the App was feasible to develop and implement for use in Uganda. With a high potential of acceptability among patients and health workers. 70% of the participants needed, but couldn't readily, access HPs and I-!Fs information amidst a high demand of such information by 89% of the population. Which further creates more room for unqualified/illegal health workers. HPs were the main source of information about HPs (for 43% of the population), followed by identity cards/posters (20%) yet only 2% would prefer l-IPs if other options were available. A Mobile App was the most preferred (by 68% population) although no service currently exists. The system reliability, security. Timeliness and data exhaustiveness were also assessed. The study proved a potential to solve a number of health sector challenges. Conclusions and recommendations: In order to operationalize the innovation. a pilot project for HDA App should be conducted, the innovation patented, and government support for the DIVS component should be sought.
A research report submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the a ward of a bachelors Degree of pharmacy of Kampala international University Uganda
Pharmacy, Feasibility, HDA app, Health facility, Verification system, Uganda