Join a discussion on health information technology for disaster relief and rebuilding

Posted on Apr 18, 2010


The conversation starts today at the GHDonline community, as they host their first ever online, expert-guided panel: “Health IT for Disaster Relief and Rebuilding: Lessons from post-earthquake Haiti.”

The panel will generate an in-depth discussion, starting Monday, April 19 and continuing until Friday, April 30. It is being organized by the Global Health Delivery Project’s GHDonline.org, a web-based collaboration platform where more than 2,600 professionals and students from 950+ organizations across 124 countries share proven practices, connect with colleagues, and find resources they need to improve health outcomes in resource-limited settings. Partners In Health is proud to be one of the founding members of this project.

The panel will be guided by three experts working on the ground in Haiti:

  • Josh Nesbit is the Executive Director of FrontlineSMS:Medic. His work as FrontlineSMS Ambassador is supported by the Open Society Institute and the Humanist Institute for Development Cooperation. As an international health and bioethics student at Stanford, his qualitative research focused on access to pediatric HIV/AIDS treatment. Josh has implemented text message networks in Malawi, Haiti, Uganda, and Cameroon, advising ICT development projects in more than 15 countries. He is a PopTech Social Innovation Fellow, Rainer Arnhold Fellow, Strauss Scholar, and Haas Public Service Fellow.
  • Eduardo Jezierski works at InSTEDD building technologies for health, development and crisis response. He and his team work with doctors and social workers to provide technologies that scale down into the hands of semi-literate health workers in rural villages of SE Asia, deploy collaboration and coordination platforms for responders and search and rescue teams, and build and train local teams of engineers to accelerate the cycle of invention and deployment - build focal points for local innovation and appropriate design. Eduardo has spent his career designing, implementing and deploying software solutions on a global scale. He spent nine years at Microsoft as a Program Manager and Architect. Eduardo recently returned from Haiti where his team worked with Thomson Reuters foundation, the Red Cross, and local media providing information services to the survivors of the earthquake.
  • John Brooks has worked as a database programmer in the New York office of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)/Doctors Without Borders for the past six years. In June 2009 he was responsible for configuring and implementing OpenMRS in MSF's Trinité trauma surgery hospital in Port au Prince, Haiti. The hospital was destroyed in the January 2010 earthquake, but the database and server were unharmed, and the informatics work which had been originally dedicated to trauma response and surgery was quickly adapted to MSF's earthquake response. Before John worked at MSF, he designed and developed an EMR system called ChartAttack and worked as a database programmer and research coordinator for community-based clinical trials in HIV research in Atlanta and New York. He has also been trained in Katherine Dunham's dance technique which is a fusion of ballet and African, Haitian, Cuban, and Brazilian folkloric dance rituals. While he was in Haiti after the earthquake he debuted his new work "Le Dans d'Hélicopterè" in MSF's inflatable hospital to entertain the patients.

These three experts have had many years of health information technology  implementation experience; they’re eager to share the work they’re doing in Haiti, answer your questions, and learn from the ideas and experiences of others in the community. To join the discussion, go to http://www.ghdonline.org/tech/discussion/haiti/ and create your free account.

GHDonline is already planning for future panels for the health IT community. To send in your ideas for topics and expert panelists, please email healthitpanel@ghdonline.org.

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