Telehealth start-up delivers healthcare in rural Africa

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Remote Doctors 4 Africa (RD4A), a telehealth start-up, is forging partnerships across the continent to deliver critical healthcare services in rural communities.

The start-up recently met with the Botswana Chamber of Mines and Minergy Group, to showcase the soon to be launched RD4A telehealth app and employees as well as members of the Botswana Chamber of Mines will have access to digital telehealth services as early as January 2022.

In a statement, RD4A says teleheath has fallen under much scrutiny in the last few years particularly in Africa facing infrastructure, connectivity, and access challenges.

However, it says globally, with new regulations from government and subsequent new rules from commercial payers, telemedicine services are being reimbursed.

This trend is one that RD4A hopes to see transpire as it works with government, industry, and doctors to shift the adoption of innovative technology solutions in rural communities.

“RD4A is actively working to address the challenges faced by African citizens, the lack of supporting telemedicine frameworks and policies, the digital barriers, patient and healthcare personal biases,” says Ernest Mhlongo, CEO of RD4A.

“To affect change, you have to take the first step, you have to toil the soil and plant the seeds one by one. This is our strategy; to address the challenges through partnerships, building the foundation for engagement to bring health services and educational awareness programs for the public, thus improving access to digital platforms and affordability.”

“It was a great opportunity for the mining houses to meet again face to face after a long two years of COVID-19. Minergy Coal is proud to have hosted this Botswana Chamber of Mines event; mining contributes immensely to the economy of Botswana and its survival is critical. We also understand that looking after the health of our people, and the communities that support our business is just as critical,” Siyani Makwakwago general manager of Minergy Coal.

“As mining stakeholders, we understand the issues affecting our industry; deficiencies of online systems is a big challenge; legacy solutions are not fully adapted to deal with the issues of the mining industry. Even so, we aspire to be innovative and the first step in doing so is to innovate where it matters most. Bringing telehealth solutions to our employees, using technology to bring the doctor and healthcare services to each of our employees, regardless of wherever they are,” says Charles Siwawa, CEO of Botswana Chamber of Mines.

The RD4A app will launch in Botswana in January 2022, providing a platform that is language-agnostic and biometrics-enabled, to address the need to deliver hospital-grade healthcare to the employees, chamber members and served communities of the Botswana Chamber of Mining. This app will be further roll-out to additional partners who sign up, and in doing so will connect the unconnected rural communities of Botswana.

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