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Telephone advice from health experts

COVID-19 is leading to an overload of health centers. In order to maintain routine health care for the population, the Zimbabwean Ministry of Health and Child Welfare called on its partners to find digital health solutions. SolidarMed, together with experts from the Ministry of Health and other partners, developed a concept for a contact center that offers digital health services to the population of Masvingo Province (Zimbabwe).

If there are any questions about Covid-19, the hotline staff will support the people calling.

The concept was tested and the digital information and consultation platform was launched at the end of 2020. With the help of the platform, healthcare professionals provide free advice to the population on general medical and Covid-19-related concerns over the phone.

The platform maintains a database with an e-triage algorithm that helps agents process calls. Phone counselors can identify risk and severity of COVID-19 infection and discuss appropriate next steps. They also provide health information to callers, helping to demystify the disease.

In Masvingo Province, village health extension workers sensitize people to the services offered. The longer the digital platform lasts, the more the population of Masvingo perceives it as a helpful way to get information and advice without having to travel far and into overburdened health facilities.