LILONGWE: It is all smiles at BHT as it embarks on its last journey towards migration of BART 1.0 (Baobab Health Anteretroviral Therapy) system to version 2.0. The exercise will see all health facilities which were still using the old version of the system switching to the new user friendly BART 2.0 platform.
BART 1.0 has been used across all District health facilities in the Southern and Central Regions of Malawi as early as 2006. However, overtime, changes in both clinical guidelines and technologies have necessitated an overhaul of the entire system. Among these, ART guidelines for the management of ART patients have kept on changing over time thus these were supposed to be incorporated into the system if BHT’s efforts were to remain relevant for MOH.
In order to keep pace with technological changes, BHT switched from its OpenMRS 1.1 Data Model to OpenMRS 1.7 in order to ensure improved data storage and access, easiness to integrate with other systems and making changes when the need arises.
Besides, BHT through its ongoing monitoring and evaluation system has received overwhelming feedback from users concerning several challenges encountered with the old system and the directorate of informatics noted that it would be better to build a complete new system that would address these challenges.
One key feature in BART 2.0 is an ability for the system to generate reports for Pre-ART infected patients as opposed to the old system. Besides, the new system has a new look of viral load monitoring which awaits Ministry of Health approval but has been duly tested ready for deployment.
Commenting on the release, Kennedy Kabwazi, Statistical Clerk for St Gabriel’s Mission Hospital whose hospital migrated to BART 2. 0 in December, 2013 attests that the new BART version has incredibly superb features that have eventually eased their work.
“The new version clearly displays recommended regimes for patients who are being initiated on treatment for the first time. This has been adopted from the current clinical guidelines for the management of drugs. It also gives room for recording reasons why patients should switch to a different line of regime when treatment fails. Besides running reports has been simplified with the inclusion of new data cleaning tools which are easy to follow and the fact that they are all working adds value to the system. As a result, we no longer take a long time to produce quarterly reports as we have very few errors to clean. I urge all system users to get committed so that they can benefit from system”.
This quarter, several facilities such as Limbe health Center, Mangochi, Chikwawa, Nsanje and Machinga district Hospitals in the Souther Region and Light House clinic in the Central region will migrate to the new platform.