Self-service medical ATMs a thing of the future

2016-07-21 06:00

South Africans will soon obtain their medication from self-service ATM-style machines.

This was announced by the South African Ministry of Health on Tuesday at the International Aids Conference taking place this week in Durban.

In a statement from the Department of Health, they said the Pharmacy Dispensing Unit (PDU), currently being piloted at Thembalethu clinic in Johannesburg, is a self-service machine where patients can obtain their medication in the same way people withdraw money at an ATM.

“The biggest challenge with not adhering to treatment is that it poses a real risk of the emergence of drug-resistant HIV, in the same way drug-resistant TB came about,” he said.

“It is thus imperative that we embrace all available measures to make it easy for people to continue with their treatment.”

The department also launched MomConnect, a free SMS service that provides pregnant mothers with regular foetal development updates throughout their term of pregnancy. The popular service already has more than 800 000 registered users.

Delegates also got a glimpse of Mothers2Mothers, a service that connects new mothers to experienced mentors to help them through their pregnancyas well as B-Wise, a youth focused online service.

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