By: PharmAccess

As the number of COVID-19 cases in Africa continues to grow -currently 52 countries in the continent are seeing the virus spread to regions beyond the capital cities- local, innovative solutions are needed to help curb the impact. To quote Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa: “Tackling cases in rural areas that often lack the resources of urban centres will pose an immense challenge for already strained health systems in Africa.”

To build a resilient healthcare response it is generally agreed that the following activities are needed:

  • Protection of health worker staff and patients to avoid facility based infections and spreading of the disease;
  • Collection of real time data on the availability of services, HR resources, equipment to test and treat the disease, and importantly, the availability of Data should be collected from both the public and the private sector. This will inform key stakeholders with real time data needed for allocation of supplies, and allocation of patients;
  • Set up and maintain up-to-date processes and knowledge to manage the disease, also in relation to non-COVID

With the surge in mobile technologies and most of the worldwide population within reach of a mobile phone, using this opportunity will provide the broadest and fastest impact on the pandemic. PharmAccess is determined to combat this new viral disease and prepare and inform providers, communities and policy makers to address the imminent situation and minimize the negative health and economic outcomes using mobile technology. Banking on 20 years of experience in the quality field and a wide experience with digital innovations, PharmAccess has developed the ‘SafeCare4Covid app’ build onto the data, documentation and guidelines developed by the WHO, to prepare and support public and private healthcare providers for Covid-19 worldwide and even in the most rural regions.

With this free, globally accessible mobile app, facility staff can do a self-assessment using their own mobile phone, to report on the availability of equipment, staff and supplies, as well as check on their own processes and knowledge to treat patients for Covid-19 while staying safe. Data derived from the SafeCare4Covid app can be used through dashboards by stakeholders for data driven resource allocation and patient allocation.

The app contains:

  • On-boarding questions, which is a collection of facilities profile data such as of suspected and confirmed cases;
  • A supply checklist, structured per type of facility (identification of gaps on g. PPEs, oxygen and infection prevention supplies) partly based on the WHO checklist (;
  • Self-assessment of facility preparedness and capabilities, guidelines, triage and other processes;
  • Quality improvement plan based on the self-assessment Resources, guidelines and posters based on WHO information on g. how to stay safe can be downloaded;
  • List of 10 COVID-19 fact ‘’did you know’’ questions sandwiched between the self-assessment questions to combat misinformation.

PharmAccess and SafeCare

PharmAccess ( is an international organization, supported by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign affairs and has offices in Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania and the Netherlands. PharmAccess strives to improve quality of and facilitate access to healthcare in sub-Saharan Africa. Within PharmAccess, SafeCare is a unique standards-based and ISQua accredited incremental approach for measuring and improving the quality of healthcare services in resource restricted settings. To date, almost 6000 SafeCare quality assessments have been performed in sub-Saharan Africa.

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