Ministry of Health and Human Services moves to automate the entire healthcare system, aiming for cost-effectiveness and efficiency throughout the system and doing so with the support of the Australian government.
The project has three main components. Project Olangch, one of the components, automates asset management, from ordering to stock management, to patient dispensing, to reports and quantification. Project Olangch launched on Wednesday, August 11, with demonstrations and staff training at various levels of the process.
The Project Olangch, explained Australia’s Ambassador Michelle Turner, uses the internet connectivity to connect multiple platforms, with visibility across the whole system, providing access to and use of evidence in decision making, strengthening Palau’s response to disease threats in real-time and improving medicine and medical availability.
The hospital, once the project is fully up and running, will be able to monitor, for example, medicine, when it comes in, the date of expiration, the level of usage, and the levels of inventory in stock. This, explained Minister Gaafar Uherbelau, will not only save money and help with planning but also ensure that there’s the availability of needed medicine and reduce human error.
The data collected from the medicines dispensed, the types, usage, and effects will provide important tools for future public health planning, added Minister Uherbelau.
The other two components include data collection from various departments of the MHHS and producing usable reports needed. For example, it collects data from the OBGYN department and produces reports such as birth statistics and other relevant reports. The reports generated can be used for MHHS operations, public health programs or public policy, and more as needed.
These two are in different stages of development, with a soft launch expected sometime in November. The programs are expected to continue to evolve and improve with feedback from staff and end users.
The program is funded by the Australian government and is being implemented in other pacific island countries as well. The Palau project includes providing the application platforms, training, and support and costs around $1.4 million dollars and runs through to 2024.
The technology is provided by mSupply, a “world’s leading Logistics Management Information System (LMIS) for health supply chains in low resource settings. mSupply provides comprehensive end-to-end logistics management, with a procurement module, comprehensive warehousing and distribution functionality, customizable reporting, budgeting tools, and patient dispensing module”, according to information provided at the briefing on Wednesday