The Ngorongoro District Authorities, in collaboration with the UNESCO Dar es Salaam Office, will welcome the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health (MoHCDGEC), Dr. Mpoki Ulisubisya, the Vice-Chancellor of the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS), Prof. Ephata Kaaya and the UNESCO Representative, Ms. Zulmira Rodrigues on 23 June 2017 for a visit to the first Tele-health Centre in the country. The mission is taking place in the context of the preparations of the handover from UNESCO to Government of this innovative model for provision of specialised health care to remote rural populations. The Tele-Clinic is part of a UNESCO/Samsung Digital Village programme in a remote Maasai village in Ngorongoro, Arusha. It is an innovation platform, testing health services provision in maternal and infant care, dental and Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) services that utilizes connectivity and smart technologies. It will be the first tele-health pilot to connect all levels of the Tanzanian healthcare system reaching out to the remotest communities. The pilot is in the initial service trial phase, focusing first on the operationalization of remote maternal consultations.
The Digital Village is a pioneering example that demonstrates how remote communities can be empowered by modern technology improving their access to quality health and education services and build capacities to generate decent income. UNESCO’s innovation approach is unique in its focus on incorporating the cultural specifics in the programme by working in close collaboration with the local community, traditional leaders and healers and by building on traditional Maasai livelihoods such as Maasai crafts to tap into the opportunities for sustained development of the Northern Circuit. The visitors will also be introduced to other Digital Village programme components including e-learning, livelihoods development and cultural tourism development activities.