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Loei hospital wins award for care with help from app

May 01. 2019
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By THE NATION

A SMALL hospital in Loei’s Wang Saphung district has won an award for the application of modern technology in which its “Aor Sor Mor” village health volunteers send in disease monitoring information via an online network.

Tambon Na Dokmai Health Promotion Hospital serves about 7,500 people and supervises 108 village health volunteers.

The area’s top challenge is injuries from road accidents, followed by chronic diabetes and high blood pressure, said the hospital’s public health educator Natthachanon “Mor Diew” Porramatthanakool. It also cares of 12 bedridden, home-bound patients who need a constant supply of medication.

Natthachanon “Mor Diew” Porramatthanakool

In July 2018, Natthachanon launched the “AorSorMor Online” app in an effort to improve disease prevention and to monitor locals’ health. The app made it easier to provide healthcare service tasks via chats, photos, videos, voice messages and location sharing. He had village health volunteers submit their weekly and monthly disease monitoring reports via the app, and found that the approach also saved time, transport costs and even 2,300 pieces of paper yearly. 

“We can contribute to tackling global warming in a small way like this. Imagine how much better it would be if all tambon-level hospitals followed suit,” he said, adding that the monthly report of Aor Sor Mor activities to supervisors can be easily concluded via HOSxP, a client/server hospital information system software used in hundreds of hospitals.

Huge amounts of data on local healthcare activities are collected by health providers, including surveys of mosquito larvae breeding grounds, chemical fume spraying details, and follow-up on-site checks conducted until the end of the disease lifecycle. Storing that volume of data became easier with AorSorMor Online allowing for GPS to pin-point the site and enable the use of photos, said Natthachanon.

With more effective disease control works in place, the facility’s budget can be used for other health promotion activities, he added. 

Learning from Natthachanon’s success, his co-workers began applying the app in their work, using it to follow up on medication for diabetes patients and care of the bedridden. For the latter, photos and details were submitted speedily to ensure their care plans were up to date. This led to the full recovery of 12 out of the hospital’s 24 bedridden patients in 2018, with those patients now able to look after themselves, said Natthachanon. 

The app also aided health volunteers as they sought consultations by sending in photos and initial information about ailments or any suspicious health matter, thus enabling the volunteers to better coordinate further treatment for patients, he said. “Our hospital is now the district’s No 1 for fastest discovery and referral of stroke patients.”

Educating staff and volunteers to be this tech-savvy was not easy and required sessions of friendly tutoring at the hospital, he conceded, but unfamiliarity faded through frequent practice and use.

“Now, all can pass information via the app.”

 

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