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Main Title: Achieving Sustainability and Scale-Up of Mobile Health Noncommunicable Disease Interventions in Sub-Saharan Africa: Views of Policy Makers in Ghana
Author(s): Opoku, Daniel
Busse, Reinhard
Quentin, Wilm
Type: Article
Is Part Of: 10.14279/depositonce-8645
Language Code: en
Abstract: Background: A growing body of evidence shows that mobile health (mHealth) interventions may improve treatment and care for the rapidly rising number of patients with noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). A recent realist review developed a framework highlighting the influence of context factors, including predisposing characteristics, needs, and enabling resources (PNE), for the long-term success of mHealth interventions. The views of policy makers will ultimately determine implementation and scale-up of mHealth interventions in SSA. However, their views about necessary conditions for sustainability and scale-up remain unexplored. Objective: This study aimed to understand the views of policy makers in Ghana with regard to the most important factors for successful implementation, sustainability, and scale-up of mHealth NCD interventions. Methods: Members of the technical working group responsible for Ghana’s national NCD policy were interviewed about their knowledge of and attitude toward mHealth and about the most important factors contributing to long-term intervention success. Using qualitative methods and applying a qualitative content analysis approach, answers were categorized according to the PNE framework. Results: A total of 19 policy makers were contacted and 13 were interviewed. Interviewees had long-standing work experience of an average of 26 years and were actively involved in health policy making in Ghana. They were well-informed about the potential of mHealth, and they strongly supported mHealth expansion in the country. Guided by the PNE framework’s categories, the policy makers ascertained which critical factors would support the successful implementation of mHealth interventions in Ghana. The policy makers mentioned many factors described in the literature as important for mHealth implementation, sustainability, and scale-up, but they focused more on enabling resources than on predisposing characteristics and need. Furthermore, they mentioned several factors that have been rather unexplored in the literature. Conclusions: The study shows that the PNE framework is useful to guide policy makers toward a more systematic assessment of context factors that support intervention implementation, sustainability, and scale-up. Furthermore, the framework was refined by adding additional factors. Policy makers may benefit from using the PNE framework at the various stages of mHealth implementation. Researchers may (and should) use the framework when investigating reasons for success (or failure) of interventions.
Issue Date: 3-May-2019
Date Available: 1-Jul-2019
DDC Class: 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Subject(s): implementation science
noncommunicable diseases
disease management
sub-Saharan Africa
qualitative research
health policy
Sponsor/Funder: DFG, 414044773, Open Access Publizieren 2019 - 2020 / Technische Universität Berlin
Journal Title: JMIR mhealth and uhealth
Publisher: JMIR Publications Inc.
Publisher Place: Toronto
Volume: 7
Issue: 5
Article Number: e11497
Publisher DOI: 10.2196/11497
EISSN: 2291-5222
Appears in Collections:FG Management im Gesundheitswesen » Publications

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