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Int J Med Inform. 2007 Jun;76 Suppl 1:S184-95. Epub 2006 Jun 27.

Public healthcare in Mozambique: strategic issues in the ICT development during managerial changes and public reforms.

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  • 1Directorate of Cooperation and Planning, Ministry of Health, Maputo, Mozambique.


It has been predicted that major introduction of information communication technology (ICT) for health care organisations (HCO) over the next 10 years will be used to achieve the universal coverage and improve the quality of health care delivered to people. Which is the best strategy on ICT transfer, adoption and adaptation for the local Mozambican HCO? This paper argues that a sociotechnical approach of ICT development can help policy makers and health managers to address the technology transfer in a better and more appropriate way to their social context and to the public health reforms in progress. The urgency of health care demands (e.g. AIDS epidemic) and the institutional changes implemented by the Government and the local Ministry of Health (MOH), open a dynamic process of re-organisation inside the health institutions in the next years. This process needs to be monitored and initiatives planned, which places pressure on the evolution of health information system (HIS). The increase in the use of ICT can be an ally for health managers. The emergence of the open source software (OSS) and the recent ICT market trends towards networking may also enable local HCO to better face and solve the long process of health care standardisation, which usually prepares and accompanies any introduction of ICT. On the other side, the "big bang" introduction of electronic packages, devices and software applications may be an obstacle framing and anchoring local HCO to external settings, "modern" and universal models. Thus, a uniform step-by-step implementation of hospital-based health information system is desirable.

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