Highlights of the openIMIS initiative 2022
The launch of the employment injury scheme in Bangladesh, the first purely modular version of openIMIS and 10.6 million people benefiting from openIMIS managed schemes - A lot has happened this year in the openIMIS initiative. With this newsletter we summarize the highlights for you. Have fun reading!
Bangladesh experts traveled to Kathmandu to learn about openIMIS
The openIMIS implementation for an Employment Injury Insurance scheme in Nepal attracted the interest of experts in Bangladesh. Within a study tour the Ministry of Labour and Employment (MoLE) of Bangladesh visited the Social Security Fund (SSF) of Nepal, a user of openIMIS. The tour was accompanied by a representative of the International Labour Organization (ILO). ILO is currently providing technical support to the MoLE in the customization and use of openIMIS for the Employment Injury Insurance scheme in Bangladesh.
The MoLE of Bangladesh aimed to learn about the implementation of openIMIS in Nepal and gain expertise on how it could be applied in Bangladesh. The study tour provided a great platform for exchange between the two agencies and an opportunity for the openIMIS initiative to widen its user base and community of practice. It was organized by GIZ Nepal.
Collaborations with the university of Mannheim
On February 2022 the openIMIS coordination desk at GIZ gave an hour-long presentation on the open-source software in healthcare in Africa and Asia at Mannheim University of Applied Sciences. About 50 IT-students at Mannheim University of Applied Sciences students attended the online colloquium. Besides a short input about the general German development cooperation, the talk highlighted key development initiatives in the development of standards for digital infrastructures in the health sector. In addition, Digital Square was presented as a hub for the promotion of software as digital public goods. Using openIMIS as an example, the speaker showed how Switzerland and Germany together with partners from civil society and the private sector are establishing a Digital Public Good in a joint project.
You can watch the whole presentation in German with English sub-titles here: Mannheimer Informatik-Kolloquium
Toumaï community workshop, openIMIS for health insurance: a modular approach
The first Toumai Workshop this year, took place on Tuesday, 15th of march. The webinar was the start of a webinar series to be held this year. The central topic was the modular approach of openIMIS. The modular approach has the particularity of allowing a simple update of each module or the creation of new modules without requiring an update of the entire software. It allows easy development or updating of health insurance modules, easy maintenance, and easy integration with various other software packages.
The Toumaï community is the French speaking community of openIMIS; it organised its first workshop of the year on the topic “openIMIS for health insurance: a modular approach”. Several participants representing the private sector and public institutions, gained knowledge about the challenges in health insurance in relation to digitalisation, the new modular version, and its impact in insurance management. An article and a video of the workshop will be available soon.
Get to Know the openIMIS Payment Module Lab
During the first half of 2022, the openIMIS initiative worked hard on new features, which allow openIMIS instances to connect to a payment layer for the integration of financial transactions into national ePayment infrastructures. With this feature, openIMIS can be set up to automatically receive and disburse payments to and from beneficiaries and service providers e.g. via mobile money channels or bank accounts. Several teams of the openIMIS Developer’s Committee then experimented on potential payment scenarios connecting openIMIS to other Digital Public Goods that are commonly used for financial transactions such as Mojaloop or Mifos).
The results and experiences of this Payment Module Lab were now presented by the teams to the larger community and to interested partners in an online workshop. Check out the recordings of the sessions on our youtube channel
Launch of the openIMIS e-learning course on socialprotection.org
Have you already completed our e-learning course about openIMIS on the socialprotection.org platform? The course was launched in May and is available on socialprotection.org. The self-paced course on the open-source software will allow you to learn more about the features of openIMIS. Furthermore, the webinar provides you with successful implementations. The course consists of 4 modules:
Module 1: The Basics
Module 2: openIMIS and the national eHealth landscape
Module 3: openIMIS Use Cases
Module 4: Sustainability & the role of the openIMIS Community
After completion of all modules and the self-assessment, you will be able to acquire knowledge on openIMIS and understand how it can contribute to countries‘ digital health ecosystems. Moreover, you get to know how openIMIS can support strategies to increase access to Universal Health Coverage and Universal Social Protection.
To join the course, you can create a free account on socialprotection.org in just a few minutes. You can pause the self-paced course at any time and continue it at another time.
Bangladesh launched a ground-breaking Employment Injury Insurance (EIS) scheme in June providing income protection for workers in the country’s ready-made garment sector
This pioneering scheme, named EIS Pilot, will ensure that, for a trial period of three years, all workers in the export-oriented ready-made garment sector are for the first time ever eligible for work-place injury and disability compensation payments in accordance with international standards adopted by the ILO Employment Injury Benefits Convention, 1964 (No. 121). The ready-made garment sector is Bangladesh’s largest manufacturing industry and provides jobs to around four million people.
The pilot is a carefully crafted collaboration between public and private partners: The Ministry of Labour and Employment will administer it through its existing Central Fund and head a tripartite public-private oversight committee composed of its own representatives as well as employers’ associations. This pioneering public-private collaboration is jointly supported by the International Labour Organization (ILO), funded by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, and the project ‘Social Protection for Workers in the Textile and Leather Sector‘, implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
The scheme is managed by openIMIS. With the support of the GIZ project and the ILO, openIMIS was customized to the requirements of the pilot. With this customized version of openIMIS, it is possible, among other things, to determine the eligible beneficiaries according to the different inheritance laws and customs.
In the initial phase of the EIS Pilot, openIMIS will be managed by a local software company, but once established, it will be hosted by the Ministry of Labour and Employment and will interoperate with the existing identity card scheme, which is in line with the government’s national digital architecture plans.
Read the full article here: Bangladesh launches pioneering employment injury scheme for the garment sector – Healthy DEvelopments (bmz.de)
openIMIS-DRG Datathon Awarding Ceremony 2022
On 4th of July, an awarding ceremony was held at Pulchowk Campus to recognize the students who won the openIMIS-DRG Datathon held from 3rd-5th of June 2022. The Center for Applied Research and Development (CARD) of the Tribhuvan University, in collaboration with the openIMIS initiative, Standards and Interoperability Lab Thailand (SIL-TH), and the Asia eHealth Information Network (AeHIN) organized the openIMIS-DRG Datathon.
The criteria used to score the performance and output of the groups were based on accuracy. The three winning teams namely Cartographers, Hufflepuff, and Trinity were awarded with certificates and prize money from the Institute of Engineering, Pulchowk Campus, Tribhuvan University.
AeHIN introduces openIMIS as a tool for COVID-19 responses
On the 26th of August, a webinar was hosted by AeHIN, on how one could use openIMIS as a tool for COVID-19 response. Julius R. Migrino, associate professor and head of the research unit of the San Beda University College of medicine, reviewed in the webinar the basic functionalities of openIMIS and its current global implementations. He then highlighted the role of information systems and digital health solutions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Based on The Gambia’s cash transfer program implemented by Bluesquare, Mr. Milgrino shows how openIMIS has been used to mitigate the impact of the pandemic. In 2020 the Government of The Gambia established a cash transfer scheme known as Nafa Quick ('quick benefits') to protect poor households against the economic effects of COVID-related lockdowns. Household registration, enrollment, and payment processes for Nafa Quick were managed using openIMIS. Based on openIMIS, the Gambian software development company 2M Corp designed and developed the registration, enrollment and payment modules of the management information system for Nafa Quick. It also provided technical assistance to the National Nutrition Agency (NaNA) to manage and operate the system.
More information about the openIMIS Implementation in The Gambia can be found here: Healthy developement The Gambia
Swiss TPH successfully conducted trainings on openIMIS for voucher scheme in Cameroon
In order to run the Chèque Santé voucher scheme for maternal health services in Cameroon, Swiss TPH recently conducted trainings on how to use openIMIS. Program administrators, medical personnel and health facility employees successfully took part in the training sessions.
The Chèque Santé voucher scheme runs in three northern regions and is funded by the French Development Agency (AFD) and technical assistance is provided by GIZ International Services. GIZ InS contracted Y-Note and Swiss TPH for the set-up of openIMIS to digitalize the registration of women and the claims management process, initially in one region. The aim of the program is to reduce mother and child mortality through an insurance mechanism that covers pregnancy care from ante-natal care (ANC) to post-natal care (PNC) until 42 days after birth. To implement the pilot in the best manner possible, new modules such as voucher number validation and packaged services have been developed. As a new implementation, The Chèque Santé voucher scheme is thus the first implementation of the new, modular version of openIMIS.
New software release 2022
The openIMIS initiative announced the October software release of openIMIS for this year. With this release it is possible to install the openIMIS core on a full open-source technology stack, eliminating the need to install software components from Microsoft. Implementers now have the choice if they want to keep their openIMIS data in an MS SQL database server or in the open-source PostgreSQL.
The developers have also put in a lot of new and impressive features, especially the new reporting module. Furthermore, a number of security improvements have been made, most prominently an update to the Django 3.2 framework.
Feel free to browse the detailed list of changes on our Wiki.
openIMIS initiative joined AeHIN General Meeting and Conference 2022
The Asia eHealth Information Network held its AeHIN General Meeting and Conference 2022 with the theme “Accelerating Digital Health Towards Universal Health Coverage (UHC)” from 10th-12th of at Ascott in Makati, Philippines which was simultaneously streamed online.
The conference coincided with the network’s 10th anniversary and Digital Health Week 2022. A total of 366 members participated in the conference; 246 joined virtually while 120 were present in the venue. Participants from 36 countries took part in the AeHIN General Meeting and Conference 2022.
The Department of Health Philippines co-hosted the event with support from the World Health Organization Country Office in the Philippines. In addition to various organizations such as WHO, USAID, Digital Square and PATH, members of the openIMIS initiative held two presentations at the conference.
On day one, openIMIS coordination desk highlighted in their presentation the achievements of the initiative in 2022 especially the Increased number of implementations (Bangladesh, Mauritania, Niger) and with it reaching 10 million beneficiaries. Moreover, their major topic was the migration to a modular version of openIMIS. With the new version there are new modules, functionalities, and design available. In their following presentation, Purushottam Sapkota and Nirmal Dhakal from GIZ gave insights into their experiences with openIMIS, which was used to manage the Nepal’s Health Insurance Board (HIB) and Social Security Fund of Nepal (SSF)
Finally, during the third day of the 2022 AeHIN GM, Saurav Bhattarai took part in the business meeting. The meeting was held to map potential development partner support to the priority needs of countries. Both presentations can be reviewed here: The new, modular openIMIS! - YouTube
A detailed reporting on the AeHIN conference and general meeting can be found here:
AeHIN celebrates its 10th year at AeHIN GM 2022 – AeHIN (asiaehealthinformationnetwork.org)
10.6 million people benefit from scheme managed by openIMIS
By end of the year 2022 the openIMIS initiative proudly announce that 10.6 million people in 7 countries benefit from health insurance, employment injury insurance, cash transfer and voucher schemes managed by openIMIS.
You find more information about each country implementation on openIMIS.org