Tele-ultrasound for improving maternal health in Togo

Tele-ultrasound for improving maternal health in Togo

A tele-ultrasound project was launched this Tuesday, September 5, 2023 in Lomé by the Ministry of Health, Public Hygiene and Universal Access to Care.

It aims to improve maternal and child health in Togo through the deployment of tele-expertise for the interpretation of ultrasound examinations carried out as part of prenatal monitoring and in obstetric emergencies.

In this context, 20 health professionals from 10 health centers spread across the 5 regions of Togo have benefited from skills strengthening in obstetric ultrasound and are trained in the use of the “Bogou” tele-expertise platform. .

4,000 pregnant women should be able to benefit from an ultrasound examination interpreted remotely by a specialist over the next 12 months. In-depth monitoring and evaluation work will be carried out to define the framework that could ultimately allow the system to be extended on a larger scale in Togo.

Indeed, tele-ultrasound facilitates pregnant women’s access to this means of diagnosis which makes it possible to estimate the age of pregnancy and to detect fetal malformations and other complications which could arise at the time of pregnancy or birth. childbirth.

This project according to Dr Aristide Afèignindou GNASSINGBE, national coordinator of digital health, will improve maternal and child health in Togo through the use of tele-expertise and more specifically, improve the monitoring of pregnant women at the level of 10 health centers in Togo. Togo through access to ultrasound examination for prenatal monitoring and management of obstetric emergencies.

“Given the inequalities that we have especially in terms of human resources in radiology and gynecology-obstetrics, we said to ourselves that we necessarily need a project to cover areas that do not have specialists. Initially , this project will fill the deficit in human resources and secondly, provide relief to women. Sometimes some pregnant women do not have an ultrasound until delivery. Through this project, women will benefit from quality care while respecting equity,” he said before adding that “we know that we can move expertise today without necessarily relying on it. move. Where there is a lack of personnel, we will be able to support them with the expertise of specialists who are in other centers. We save time and financial resources. Today, for example, if we detect that a woman problems, we have more time to refer her than at the time when there was no tele-ultrasound.”

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For his part, the Secretary General of the Ministry of Health, Dr Kokou WOTOBE recalled the importance and usefulness of obstetric ultrasound in monitoring pregnant women.

He indicated that this project contributes to improving maternal and child health, thus participating in the priority projects of the 2020-2025 government roadmap relating to the establishment of universal health coverage.

Note that this project benefits from the technical and financial support of the Pierre Fabre Foundation.

In terms of digital technology in general, in recent years, Togo has made good qualitative progress with, among other things, the creation of a national cyber security agency, the passage of Google’s “Equiano” cable, the deployment of 5 G , the creation of a national digital health agency.

Rachel Doubidji

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