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1 Digital resources in the Eastern Cape, South Africa Stephen Korsman Virologist Groote Schuur NHLS / University of Cape Town 2 December 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Digital resources in the Eastern Cape, South Africa Stephen Korsman Virologist Groote Schuur NHLS / University of Cape Town 2 December 2014."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Digital resources in the Eastern Cape, South Africa Stephen Korsman Virologist Groote Schuur NHLS / University of Cape Town 2 December 2014

2 2 Outline The bad side – Demographics – Telkom – Eskom The good side – Digital aids – Digital pathology – Other opportunities

3 3 The bad side

4 4 Demographics Largely rural Poor infrastructure Most people do not have running water Roads are poor People are poor Cell phones are common Internet access is poor

5 5 Limpopo

6 6 Telkom + Eskom Copper is valuable No phones No data No power Photo: Gallo images Photo: Gallo images Photo: ops-make-r3m-copper-bust

7 7 Photo: Desiree Swart theft-in-moruleng?sn=Gallery Headlines: – Eskom copper cable theft cost R350 million – One village, over 700 cable thefts in four months – One electrocuted, three charged for Eskom cable theft – Telkom cable theft wreaks network havoc: pictures – Telkom 'no' to lines in cable- theft areas – Copper-cable theft costing Britain a fortune (Daily Mail Online)

8 8 NHLS labs In Mthatha – Power cuts, faulty electricity – Laboratory Information System TrakCare – Requires continuous online link – – copper cables stolen FOUR times – Failure to change from Disa to TrakCare – Wireless (?3G, ?HSDPA?) link needed to prevent theft – Still waiting …

9 9 NHLS labs Outside Mthatha – Even poorer infrastructure – Hospitals usually have running water The lab may not always be linked up TB testing done using collected rainwater – False positive due to harmless environmental mycobacteria – Do we expect these hospitals to run an online LIS successfully? Northern Cape – minor problems with connectivity Eastern Cape – huge problems with connectivity

10 10 The good side

11 11 A lot is being done digitally

12 12 Forms of digitally aided research Simple  complex Simple contact + data sharing Skype, YouTube conferences / talks – Not just videos of funny cats! Online / shared databases – HIV, HBV drug resistance – HIV genomic studies – Vaccine development Online data tracking / monitoring – Not just Big Brother watching you! Microscopy across the web

13 13 Google Flu Trends Google Recorded USA South Africa

14 14 Organisations Research Without Borders: Big Open Data Thursday, December 4th, pm Columbia University’s Faculty House

15 Don’t forget… or

16 16 Online training

17 17 Possibilities

18 18 Digital pathology Walter Sisulu University – Anatomical Pathology High resolution digital microscope = Nikon Coolscope Connected via ISDN, later ADSL, to NHLS intranet Sites with Coolscopes: WSU, East London, Port Elizabeth, Stellenbosch Univ, MEDUNSA Anyone with internet could reach the microscope – Login was controlled Second opinions from Stellenbosch University Officially opened in 2007 Part of WSU’s digital medicine programme – Included clinical consultations

19 19 Banach L, Stepien A, Schneider J, Wichrzycka-Lancaster E. Dynamic active telepathology over National Health Laboratory service network, South Africa: feasibility study using Nikon Coolscope. Diagn Pathol 2008;3:Suppl 1

20 20 Banach L, Stepien A, Schneider J, Wichrzycka-Lancaster E. Dynamic active telepathology over National Health Laboratory service network, South Africa: feasibility study using Nikon Coolscope. Diagn Pathol 2008;3:Suppl 1

21 21 Photos courtesy of Marie-Paule Henshall- Howard, GSH NHLS Roche CAP/CTM Mthatha East London Port Elizabeth

22 22 Opportunities Telephonic consultations with pathologists – Ongoing, underutilised Live access to local instruments via the internet – In development Sharing of log files or run data for pathologist validation of assays – Not yet done Easy to do, smaller labs don’t do many tests with portable run data


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