Back in March of 2020, shortly after the first confirmed case of Covid-19, cases started to increase rapidly throughout Pakistan. To counter this, the Health Department of KP quickly developed mechanisms to track patients and potential infection hotspots via the Integrated Patient Management System (IPMS).
In May the KP Fellowship team received a request from the Health Minister to form a team of data scientists to provide support with caseload management and data analysis on the IPMS platform. There was also a need to conduct surveys from data entry operators for system improvements. Research was also required to prepare policy for easing or enforcing smart lockdown and preparing guidelines for enforcing SOPs. Additional technical assistance was required to support the IPMS team for system improvements.
The support project was aimed at:
- Continuously improving the monitoring/case management mechanism
- Analyzing data compiled in the system to provide insights to the minister on a daily basis
A team of four Fellows was hired on May 8th,2020, and immediately got to work compiling daily situational reports to update the Health Minister on the status of the pandemic across KP. Updates were made to the IPMS system to speed up the data entry process across 150 access points. The team was also instrumental in policy-making on smart lockdown strategy for reopening the tourism sector of Galiyat Abbottabad, where a detailed survey was conducted to calculate the loss to the tourism sector if a blanket lockdown was to be extended. Working closely with the IPMS team of consultants, the team was also able to develop a QR-code-based patient tracking system which was integrated with the IPMS platform. The IPMS support team was instrumental in supporting the government in managing the pandemic, and we are really proud of the Fellows who worked on this.