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Indiana University receives NIH grant to improve health care in East Africa
Date:11/16/2009

INDIANAPOLIS A $1.3 million grant to Indiana University from the National Institutes of Health's Fogarty International Center will establish the East African Center of Excellence in Health Informatics.

The new center will connect the expertise of one of the world's foremost informatics programs at IU and the Regenstrief Institute with one of the leading academic medical centers in East Africa at Moi University and Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital to increase the capacity for electronic health records in one of the worlds' poorest regions. By helping East African countries use electronic health records to increase the efficiency and quality of care, this Center of Excellence grant will help East Africans cross what has been termed "the digital divide."

"To be most efficient and effective, health care delivery and public health needs require timely access to high-quality data," said William Tierney, M.D., of the IU School of Medicine and the Regenstrief Institute, co-director of the new center. "Developing countries have been on the far side of the digital divide. Without computerized care management, tracking and analysis, these nations have obtained less than optimal outcomes from what they spend on health care." Dr. Tierney, an internationally respected leader in medical informatics, is an Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis Chancellor's Professor of Medicine and executive director of the Regenstrief Center for Healthcare Improvement and Research.

"Importantly, this Center of Excellence will train East Africans to use electronic tools to solve healthcare problems in their own countries," he said. "My American and Kenyan colleagues have shown in Kenya that in spite of problems such as scarce resources, lack of trained personnel, ethnic tension and even lack of dependable electricity, we can capture data electronically that have been used to enhance health-care outcomes and public health. We believe this is an
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Contact: Cindy Fox Aisen
caisen@iupui.edu
317-274-7722
Indiana University School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

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