Last week, Computer Weekly reported on a partnership between the Vodafone Group Foundation, the World Health Organization (WHO), the national Ministries of Health and the United Nations Foundation (UNF) to develop an improved system for the collection of health data and the integration of various healthcare campaigns. The electronic system is being designed to replace paper-based health-data systems and streamline activities such as surveying, collecting data, and administering immunization programs. The system allows application developers, content providers, and project implementers such as NGOs and governments to modify the data-gathering application to better address evolving health needs, especially of remote populations.
By building a flexible platform to enable healthcare data transmission, the partnership will enable a wide range of future health services. Increasingly, global organizations and governments addressing broad social issues recognize the need for two-way information delivery and synchronization with existing back-end systems. The technology must also interact with various devices, including mobile devices in the field. This will require a flexible backbone and architecture that goes beyond the partnership’s current designs. The impact of efficient, effective technology could extend beyond community health programs and provide positive outcomes in education, government services, commerce, and business processes. Global organizations and governments represent a growing market willing to dedicate a greater share of budget to technology architecture development.
Multinational corporations can capture a larger share of the growing service delivery and outreach market by building an extensible technology backbone that enables the transfer of data across multiple devices and addresses stakeholder needs across verticals. Data collection needs, which span financial, government, and communication services, are becoming a larger component of emerging-market budgets. Multinational corporations would do well to identify where they can best contribute to the development of this architecture. The partnership between Vodafone, WHO and the UNF is one of many future initiatives that pave the way for new opportunities for companies focused on delivering financial, e-government and communication services in emerging markets.
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