A Digital health Applied Research Center (DHARC)

Digital Health Applied Research Center (DHARC) is an established center under the College of Health sciences, suited in Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) which is a Public university that is situated in Juja, 36 kilometers northeast of Nairobi, along the Nairobi-Thika Super-Highway, off Exit 15. It offers courses in Technology, Engineering, Science, Commerce, Management and Building sciences. The university has a strong research interest in the areas of Biotechnology and Engineering. It’s ranked the most preferred University in Kenya for three years in a row.

JKUAT

The DHARC center was sponsored by USAID. This took place through DHARC’s first project HIGDA project; project that focused on Health Informatics Governance and Data Analytics.

As a leader in our industry, we have always worked to develop advanced technology and innovative methods. The interoperability DHARC center, provides operators and developers of eHealth systems as well as processes with a powerful state-of-the-art infrastructure for testing the quality, interoperability, networking, security, scalability and optimization of electronic health systems even the before first practical use and launch onto the market with-in the healthcare sector.

Development

DHARC is an open source software development environment for:

Project Scheduling And Management – For invited HIS expert to share industry experience and collaborate with the students by leverage on DHARC specialized ICT assets and students’ innovation.

Training – With customized content for mentorship for in person and online training regarding digital health technologies, standards all designed for speed and high-impact learning.

Teaming – We invite HIS expert to share industry experience and collaborate with the students by leverage on DHARC specialized ICT assets lab and students’ innovation.

Tooling – We develop and support open source software components and platforms that help 3rd party software solutions to be implemented based on standards of eHealth interoperability profiles.

Consulting – Work with industry players in various sectors within the health domain.

Vision

To excel in the training of Health Records & Information Management professionals for the country’s development needs.

Mission

To produce leaders in training, research and innovation in the field of health records and information management to support the JKUAT vision and mission to suit the needs of a dynamic health sector.

Goal

Improve the national and county level health sector’s organizational and management capacity in health informatics, health governance, health data analytics and visualization, monitoring & evaluation an of health systems and finally learning.

Core Values

  1. Quality
  2. Teamwork
  3. Professionalism
  4. Innovation
  5. Dynamism
  6. Accountability
  7. Integrity.

Target

This program targets direct entry applicants or any other equivalent qualifications recognized by University Senate.PHILOSOPHY

The program is anchored on the philosophy of enhancing access to quality, well-trained health professionals for improved service delivery in the health sector.

Philosophy

The program is anchored on the philosophy of enhancing access to quality, well-trained health professionals for improved service delivery in the health sector.

Data Security and Privacy controls

DHARC has established physical, logical, and administrative controls that protect data from unauthorized disclosure, access, and use, as per the standard operating procedures and in adherence to the Kenya Data Protection Act, 2013.
The has a selective data governance committee whose roles and responsibility are to provide stewardship in data privacy and security.

The center has set security and privacy principles that govern the following areas;

  • Use Case Approach

Principle of a use case approach is suggested as DHARC’s business model for engaging the eHealth stakeholders, so as to address the challenge of complexity of eHealth related requirements.

  • Preservation of Information

The principle of preservation of information in the context of the eHealth domain calls for preservation of medical records and medical information held in an electronic format.

Functionality

The Digital Health Applied Research Centre (DHARC), to be operationalized at JKUAT under HIGDA, is slated to play a crucial role in providing the evidence necessary for operationalizing Kenya’s national HIS blueprint, while supporting wide-scale implementation of interoperable solutions based on its policies and protocals. The principle objective of the centre is to create an environment for sharing knowledge and experiences around innovative digital health tools for interoperability.

Principles

  1. Security and Privacy – DHARC has established physical, logical, and administrative controls that protect data from unauthorized disclosure, access, and use, as per the standard operating procedures and in adherence to the Kenya Data Protection Act, 2013.
    The has a selective data governance committee whose roles and responsibility are to provide stewardship in data privacy and security.
  2. Use Case Approach – Principle of a use case approach is suggested as DHARC’s business model for engaging the eHealth stakeholders, so as to address the challenge of complexity of eHealth related requirements.
  3. Preservation of Information – The principle of preservation of information in the context of the eHealth domain calls for preservation of medical records and medical information held in an electronic format.

Reusability

DHARC shall therefore promote the sharing of health solutions, concepts, frameworks, and specifications with interested parties. Such will be clearly documented on a case by case within the intellectual property agreement -IPA.

General Objectivies

  • To Develop a national research agenda that incorporates GIS and Geospatial analytics to support decision making in health sector.
  • To support national and county governments on implementation of system interoperability.
  • To support both National and County governments to embrace the use of data analytics for decision making in health.
  • To provide a fully functional test environment available and accessible to public and private sector systems developers.

Specific Objectives to DHARC Programmes

The objectives of the DHARC Programmes are to prepare graduates, by means of theoretical, practical, and clinical instruction applied in health information management to:

  1. Develop the ability to respond to the changing informational needs of the patient, the providers of health care, researchers and educators.
  2. Acquire awareness of the technologies and equipment affecting information storage and retrieval and to develop the ability to utilize these resources appropriately.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of the history and evolution of health records and information management with particular emphasis on current and future developments in the profession.
  4. Acquire an understanding of the current scope and responsibilities of health records and information management and its relationship to other professions.
  5. To equip graduates with knowledge and skills necessary for effective research in health information management.
  6. To mainstream GIS and data visualization in health records and information management for better policy and decision making

A holistic quality-trained graduate in DHARC Courses is suited to work in:

  • Computer and information technology (IT) companies
  • Government health departments
  • Health insurance companies
  • Public and private hospitals
  • Community health services
  • Research Institutions
  • Non-governmental organizations

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