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Ericsson / UN bring digital health benefits to Africa

March 10, 2009 • Mobile and Telecoms

EriccssonCEO_Carl_Henric_Svanberg.jpgThe United Nations Office for Partnerships, in conjunction with Ericsson, has launched a new project to enable the use of mobile-health applications and services in rural Africa.

Ericsson, a founding member of the UN’s Digital Health Initiative (DHI), has been continually involved in the global body’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) projects, aiming to reduce extreme poverty around the world.

The DHI is actively working towards the delivery of health services to millions in developing countries through public/private partnership. Specifically, diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis and other infectious and communicable illnesses are targeted in an attempt to reduce mortality rates.

Ericsson’s has achieved previous success in similar projects in India and Bangladesh, providing medical assistance and services to rural communities through mobile communication technology. Private sector involvement in these projects is crucial to provide governments and NGO’s with the technical know-how and infrastructure needed to effectively tackle problems of communication and service delivery in the health sector.

Carl-Henric Svanberg, Ericsson President and Chief Executive Officer, says: “Telecommunications play a vital role in facilitating access to health services, which help end the cycle of poverty and empower communities to improve their own social and economic situations. This initiative reflects Ericsson’s ongoing commitment to harnessing our technical leadership to develop sustainable business models that bridge the digital, and health, divides.”

Ericsson is already involved in the UN’s Millennium Village project, servicing sites in Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya, Ghana, Tanzania, Senegal, Mali, Nigeria, Malawi and Ethiopia.

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