Kigali health workers get 3,700 cell phones

In a bid to improve coordination and communication between health officials, the Ministry of Health has issued mobile phones to over 3,700 community health workers working at grass root village health centres in the three districts of Kigali City.
Dr Agnes Binagwaho and City Mayor Aisa Kirabo admiring the phones before they were handed over to City health workers (Photo F. Goodman)
Dr Agnes Binagwaho and City Mayor Aisa Kirabo admiring the phones before they were handed over to City health workers (Photo F. Goodman)

In a bid to improve coordination and communication between health officials, the Ministry of Health has issued mobile phones to over 3,700 community health workers working at grass root village health centres in the three districts of Kigali City.

The phones were handed over to the workers yesterday, at a function that was presided over by Agnes Binagwaho, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health. 

Speaking to The New Times, Binagwaho said that the phones are an initiative by the government to improve the health sector as well as make Rwanda a technology-oriented country.

“The phones will help health workers at village level send reports easily to the central level; we will then be able to carry out analysis and send feedback very quickly.  This will help everyone improve their methods of operations.

She added that the phones will not only be used for reporting, but also for sending emergency alerts, where help will be dispatched right away.

Kigali City Mayor, Aisa Kirabo Kacyira, who was also present, said that the initiative would improve health by improving the capacity of the leadership to avail swift guidance and information to help grass root health workers do their work much more effectively.

“We have been having easy information flow between doctors and nurses, but not with health workers at the grass root level. These phones will give them the means to communicate to higher leadership and have better access to community health,” Kirabo said.

The Mayor also called upon the health workers to maintain discipline and use the cell phones efficiently by prioritizing their patients’ needs over their personal needs.

The exercise of distributing the phones to health workers has been going on in several parts of the country.

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