As part of its commitment to socially conscious projects, T-Systems in South Africa has become an official supporter of the Transnet Phelophepa Health Train. The company has donated IT equipment and is also providing supporting services.
The project, operated by the Transnet Foundation, has since its inception in 1994 provided local communities with critical and medical services that aren’t readily attainable and available.
The Transnet Foundation has now launched a second train and T-Systems, corporate customer arm of Deutsche Telekom, have supplied the train with important ICT infrastructure such as a new file server, 20 wall mounted all-in-one PCs and a notebook for the train manager.
T-Systems is also responsible for support services (on the train) such as desktop support, mail provisioning, file server support and backup services.
Furthermore, the company will sponsor an additional 10 notebooks as well as monthly IT support to the medical students working on the train that require facilities to write exams electronically.
Since its first journey almost 20 years ago, the Transnet Phelophepa Health Train has seen an average of 45 000 patients per year – treating over 600 000 patients; trained over 20 000 student doctors, pharmacists, nurses and benefited 5,4-million people through HIV/AIDS awareness initiatives.
The Transnet Phelophepa Health Train travels for 36 weeks of the year, using two different routes to reach remote areas of South Africa.
“It is a privilege to participate in this project that is providing critical healthcare to South Africans across the country. We have a strong partnership with Transnet and through this project we can assist the foundation with is exceptional work,” comments Gert Schoonbee, MD at T-Systems in South Africa.
The Transnet Phelophepa Health Train offers facilities to conduct general health, dental and eye checks and to dispense medicines for diagnosed conditions. In addition it provides individual counseling sessions and group workshops to support those with psychological issues (such as stress and depression).
The train also houses a special coach where education on general health issues including nutrition, hygiene and dental health can be provided to members of the visited local communities.
Creating a network of doctors, hospitals, health insurance providers and other participants helps the healthcare sector to improve its service and care whilst saving costs. The digitisation of administrative tasks also significantly reduces processing time.  For example, by using electronic cost estimates instead of hand written ones, health insurance providers save considerable costs related to processes.
Deutsche Telekom is continually expanding its activities in the healthcare sector and, to this end, launched the Healthcare strategic business area in 2010. The group intends to generate additional revenue of 1-billion euros by 2015 with intelligent networks in the healthcare, energy, automotive and media sectors.
Deutsche Telekom is also focusing on issues such as the remote treatment of patients with devices that measure temperatures or blood glucose levels that can be integrated with smartphones, tablet PCs for doctors’ rounds in hospitals, hospital IT, assistance and emergency systems for the aged as well as electronic health cards.