Health sector embraces technology

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Health minister Dr Obadiah Moyo speaks on doctors' strike

At least 50 percent of private healthcare providers  now have active Information Technology facilities and have automated claims submission as the health sector moves to go paperless in a move that will see medical aid societies effecting real time payments by the first quarter of next year.

Addressing delegates at the Bonvie Medical Aid Scheme Electronic Claims Platform launch in Harare on Thursday, Health and Child Care Minister Obadiah Moyo said private healthcare providers are now managing clients with more efficiency.

“Ten years ago, the health industry in general and medical aid sector in particular was relying  100% on manual submission of claims.

“Being made up of a pool of local medical aid funders, hospitals and clinics, specialist doctors, general practitioners , laboratories, pharmacies and ancillary service providers.

“It is a credit that at least 50 percent of private healthcare providers now have active IT facilities, are managing their clients with improved efficiency and have automated claims submissions and processing through the switching process,” Dr Moyo said.

He said the vision and mission of government is for all medical aid societies to introduce real time payments in the first quarter of the year.

“The vision and mission of government is for all medical aid societies to introduce real time payments in the first quarter of the year.

“My office  has already communicated its intent to the  Association of Healthcare Funders of Zimbabwe (AHFoZ) secretariat,” he said.

Dr Moyo urged suppliers of IT based solutions not to leave government owned entities behind.

“As a ministry, we are constantly looking at new  IT models to assist even government owned medical service providers (hospitals) to either commence or improve their IT intensity, knowing the positive payoffs that will emerge at the facility and national level.

“We are therefore challenging vendor suppliers of IT based solutions not to leave government owned entities behind,” he said.