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Telehealth in Sub-Saharan Africa: Lessons for Humanitarian Engineering

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1 Author(s)
Kenneth R. Foster ; Department of Bioengineering, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA

This paper discussed the sudden influx of modern communications has opened up exciting opportunities for humanitarian engineering a field that many engineers associate with installation of water and sanitation facilities in rural areas to adapt mobile communications technologies to address the urgent health needs of this impoverished region. In reviewing the current progress of cell phone telehealth in sub-Saharan Africa, it can be argued that despite much enthusiasm, and considerable hyperbole, about the technology, the contribution of cell phone telehealth to the health of the population in developing countries is difficult to predict. On a smaller scale, however, individual engineers have carried out exciting projects and there clearly is an opportunity for more work by volunteer engineers.

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IEEE Technology and Society Magazine  (Volume:29 ,  Issue: 1 )