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'Dhaka University Telemedicine Program': An Initiative for Admirable Remote Healthcare Services

Publish On : 21/08/2017

Suppose, you are currently residing in a remote area. Suddenly, you fell ill, then what would knock your mind firstly? Certainly, you would like to get medical services from a specialist doctor. Considering such issue, Dhaka University Telemedicine Program is providing remote medical services through specialist doctors for the village people.

Director of this project and honorable Pofessor of Biomedical Physics and Technology Department, Dhaka University (DU) Khondokar Siddiq-E Rabbani said-Firstly, a patient needs to go to a nearby Telemedicine Service Center. Then, the entrepreneur of the service center will make a communication between the doctor and patient through a technological system. After different tests, the doctor can remark on the patient’s current condition at once, besides having the information of the patients. Let’s get clear about the issue. Every Telemedicine Center consists of different treatment materials, like stethoscope, ECG machine, microscope, X-Ray View box. Doctor getting information of the patient’s problem, will tell the entrepreneur of the center regarding the tests that the patient needs to do. During the physical test, that equipment is connected to computer and so, the doctor can give the report on instant.

Khondokar Siddiq-E Rabbani said-All the digital materials used in these centers are innovated by the Telemedicine Operation team. Besides, we ourselves developed a software to provide remote treatment services. Information of all the patients is usually registered in this software. More than 5 thousand and 800 patients have already been provided treatment services so far. 75% of the patients are women, children and aged people.

Currently, 8 doctors are available for the treatment purposes. The number of doctors is increasing gradually, as informed Mr. Siddiq-E Rabbani. Besides the existing materials, their research team is working on innovating more different materials to provide services for more diseases. Another team of three members work for the technical implementation of their innovated materials. The materials developed by their team have already roamed outside the country. This Telemedicine Operation is running with the support of Access to Information (a2i) Programme, Prime Minister’s Office and different donations as well.

Stating about the Telemedicine Program, Khondokar Siddiq-E Rabbani said-In the year 2011, a team led by me started developing materials and software with a view to providing treatment services. Later, in 2013, I did an experiment in field-levels. Later, I got approval for initiating the program from Dhaka University and Health department. In the year 2015, ‘Dhaka University Telemedicine Program’ emerged with the direction of Biomedical Physics and Technology Department, DU through the local entrepreneurs. Anyone can have the opportunity to be a local entrepreneur abiding by their rules.

To make the treatment system simpler, they also made an experiment called ‘Tele Apa’. As per this system, a woman from a local center going to a female patient’s residence used to make a communication between the patient and the doctor. But, due to the financial issue, this program got shut down. 95% of the total patients were females availed treatment services through ‘Tele Apa’. This program already won different awards and got recognized as well. It achieved the BRAC-Manthan Award in 2016. Later, the program also gained ‘Finalist’ certificate in Manthan South Asia 2016 and in last June, the program was recognized with ‘Championship’ award in World Summit on the Information Society Forum (WSIS) held in Geneva, Switzerland.

The Telemedicine Program team also has a plan for its expansion in many more villages across the country. Mr. Rabbani said-We would like to introduce this Telemedicine Program in several countries of the third world. Already, couple of countries showed their interest in this regard.

Dhaka University Telemedicine Program is likely to step even in international level, if everything goes okay.




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