Rural doctors in Georgia will improve management of COVID-19 cases thanks to a new online portal
MTSKHETA, Georgia, December 29 2020 – All village doctors in Georgia will enhance their knowledge on COVID-19 prevention and management through a centralized online platform launched by the Emergency Situations Coordination and Urgent Assistance Centre of the Ministry of IDPs, Labor, Health, and Social Affairs and UNICEF, with financial support from USAID. The main goal of the centralized platform is to help rural populations, including mothers and children, to receive necessary support from well-trained rural primary healthcare professionals.
To ensure the effective work of the platform, UNICEF has provided internet access to 1,000 rural health clinics and has equipped rural doctors with headphones and webcams so that they can participate in audio-video conferences and provide online consultations.
The Covid-19 pandemic has once again highlighted the crucial role of rural doctors in providing primary health care to the population. Therefore, it is especially important for us to increase the effectiveness of the rural doctors' programme and to support doctors in this direction.
"I think the new online platform will support rural doctors in professional management of coronavirus cases and will improve the quality of primary health care available to rural population." - Zurab Andghuladze
"Today we launched a new online platform in the Emergency Situations Coordination and Urgent Assistance Centre and started the Internetisation of rural health clinics, which will significantly improve the access of rural doctors to uninterrupted communication channels, so that they can receive information on new protocols and guidelines, expected vaccines, screenings, etc. In addition, through the online platform, we will be able to meet the medical needs of rural doctors and the local population in a timely manner,” said Zurab Andghuladze, Deputy Director of the Emergency Coordination and Emergency Assistance Center. "I think the new online platform will support rural doctors in professional management of coronavirus cases and will improve the quality of primary health care available to rural population," he added.
"UNICEF will continue to further enhance telemedicine to ensure the continuity of primary health care services in Georgia." - Ghassan Khalil
“Health systems around the world are being challenged by an increasing demand for care of people with COVID-19,” said Ghassan Khalil, UNICEF Representative in Georgia. “We need to ensure that quality healthcare is accessible and provided to all, whether they live in a rural or an urban area. Unified communication tools such as the online platform will equip rural healthcare professionals with the latest information and skills to better manage the risks related to COVID-19. UNICEF will continue to further enhance telemedicine to ensure the continuity of primary health care services in Georgia,” added Khalil.
The online platform will offer various cloud-based video conferencing tools that will enable doctors to participate in facilitated small group discussions, topic-based chats, and to improve their knowledge on evidence-based clinical care standards. The doctors will also receive the relevant information and guidelines via online livestreams and recorded video trainings.
The platform will become a notification centre for the doctors, as well as a task-distribution and monitoring tool. It will also serve as an experience-sharing space for the doctors.
Rural doctors are the only health authorities in vulnerable, rural areas. They are also responsible for dealing with COVID-19 cases. UNICEF, in partnership with Caritas Czech Republic, is carrying out trainings for 1,300 rural primary healthcare professionals in the management of suspected or diagnosed COVID-19 cases. The rural doctors have been trained in conducting remote health consultations for mothers and caregivers on topics related to post-partum or childcare in order to ensure the continuity of basic mother and child health services during the COVID-19 pandemic.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org/georgia/