The case for SmartTrack

Michael Paik, Ashlesh Sharma, Arthur Meacham, Giulio Quarta, Philip Smith, John Trahanas, Brian Levine, Mary Ann Hopkins, Barbara Rapchak, Lakshminarayanan Subramanian

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Nearly 40 million people in Africa suffer from HIV/AIDS. African governments and international aid agencies have been working to combat this epidemic by vigorously promoting Highly Active Anti-Retroviral Therapy (HAART) programs. Despite the enormous subsidies offered by governments along with free Anti-Retro Viral (ARV) drugs supplied by agencies, the introduction and implementation of HAART programs on a large scale has been limited by two fundamental problems: (a) lack of adherence to the ARV therapy regimen; (b) lack of accountability in drug distribution due to theft, corruption and counterfeit medication. In this paper, we motivate the case for SmartTrack, a telehealth project which aims to address these two problems facing HAART programs. The goal of SmartTrack is to create a highly reliable, secure and ultra low-cost cellphone-based distributed drug information system that can be used for tracking the flow and consumption of ARV drugs in HAART programs. In this paper, we assess the potential benefit of SmartTrack using a detailed needs-assessment study performed in Ghana, using interviews with 516 HIV-positive rural patients in a number of locations across the country. We find that a system like SmartTrack would immensely benefit both patients and healthcare providers, and can ultimately lead to improved patient outcomes and better accountability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2009 International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development, ICTD 2009 - Proceedings
Pages458-467
Number of pages10
DOIs
StatePublished - 2009
Event2009 International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development, ICTD 2009 - Doha, Qatar
Duration: Apr 17 2009Apr 19 2009

Publication series

Name2009 International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development, ICTD 2009 - Proceedings

Other

Other2009 International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development, ICTD 2009
CountryQatar
CityDoha
Period4/17/094/19/09

Keywords

  • Drug monitoring
  • Drug tracking
  • Patient adherence
  • SmartTrack
  • Telehealth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Information Systems

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