Image: The Equatel health kiosk that will help patients in rural areas.

CAPE TOWN - Equatel, a telecommunications company aims to give everyone access to healthcare systems even in rural areas. 

By using their portable digital health kiosk, it offers an entire healthcare system and is user-friendly.

Whether the user is a patient, health professional, pharmacist or a member of a health network,  the services the device offfers is meant to provide support for all. The company says that patients can be assured that all information received by the health professional is accurate, documented and protected. They also promise that medication is verified and prescriptions that are given are correct.  

Due to the service that are offered with the device, health professionals are able to diagnose and prescribe based on the patients medical information. Pharmacies are assured of authentic prescriptions and can track payments. When speaking to Gershon Gutmer, Vice President of Sales for Equatel at AfriaCom which took place at the CTICC, he said that the company does not do business with individuals but only healthcare proffesionals and NGO's such as UNICEF. 

"Many places in Africa which don't have or have limited access to health and with our technology working with a 3G or 4G connectivity you can have a real remote consultation and not just video or telephonic but by using medical sensors that looks at your vital signs, blood test online and pregncy scans", said Gutmer. 

When using the device, Users log in to the system using a personal SIM or smart card. The card acts as a personal identification through the entire health platform.  After logging in users can schedule a medical appointment via the kiosk’s user-friendly interface. 

The patient consults with the doctor using the built in high definition camera and audio handset. Video consultation allows the doctor to view symptoms in real time. Additionally, if other check-ups such as blood pressure are necessary, the doctor can guide the patient through the use of the kiosk’s medical attachments and view the results on their personal screen. 

The doctor can also pull up any other content and display it on the patient’s screen. The e-health kiosk is a durable and sturdy device, designed to withstand harsh environmental conditions and is compatible with GSM cellular, WiFi and fiber optic connectivity. 

It also has a solar-powered tablet built to function effectively in locations without electricity, it stays connected to the network up to 35 km from a base station.

Here is a list of services the device can do:

1. Blood diagnostics

2. ECG

3. Eyeysight test

4. Glocose monitroing 

5. Hearing test

6. Respiratory monitoring

7. Stethoscope

8. Ultrasound