Introduction / Brief History
The International Society for Telemedicine and eHealth (ISfTeH), originally formed in 1997 to represent individuals with an interest in telemedicine, re-founded under Swiss Law in 2003. One of the essential changes was the transformation from an organization of individuals into an umbrella association for national telemedicine and eHealth organization, which is politically neutral and democratic. The main activities of the society are promotion and support of telemedicine and eHealth activities worldwide, assisting the start-up of new national organization and supporting developing countries in the fields of telemedicine and eHealth.
The First Nigerian to be a member of ISFTeH was Dr. Olajide Joseph Adebola, followed by Dr. Taiwo Joseph-Kolo, Dr. BabaJide Lawson, Dr. Oladapo Olayiwola and Dr. Olushola Ojo.
At the ordinary General Assembly of ISFTeH held at Luxexpo, Luxembourg April 6, 2005, fifty-eight countries was represented and Nigeria was proudly represented by Dr. Olajide Joseph Adebola. The congress generally agreed that individual members should get eHealth association started in their respective countries to help facilitate development, dissemination of knowledge in telemedicine and eHealth worldwide.
Society for Telemedicine and eHealth in Nigeria (SFTeHIN) was established April 2005 and presided by Dr. Olajide Joseph Adebola and became national representative member ISfTeH July 2005.
The Society is also participating in the World health Organization Global observatory for eHealth systems (GOe), an initiative of the Department of e-health unit, knowledge management and sharing World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland. GOe is a worldwide instrument for promoting best practices in telemedicine and eHealth.
The Society for Telemedicine and eHealth in Nigeria (SFTeHIN) is a non-governmental and not-for-profit society, a national representative member International Society for Telemedicine and eHealth (ISfTeH) registered in Switzerland. It is geopolitically neutral and democratic.
The Society will be collaborating with the WHO collaborating centre on Telemedicine, Norwegian Telemedicine centre, Norway, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) and National eGovernment Strategies (NeGsT) and other relevant institutions on projects, research and training.
The society has placed Nigeria in the league of Nation involved in Telemedicine and eHealth for the promotion of global competitiveness facilitating national dissemination of knowledge and experience on telemedicine and eHealth and to provide access to recognized experts in the field in Nigeria.
SFTeHIN took the initiative of organizing multi-national stakeholders meeting on “Developing Sustainable Telemedicine and eHealth Programme for Nigeria” in September 27th 2005 which involve public private partnership. To support the Federal Government of Nigeria policy for Information Technology (IT) to invest in IT-based health care systems to ensure that Nigerians have access to good health care delivery. A high level of collaboration is a huge value among stakeholders and the most critical success factor in any telemedicine and eHealth initiative.
The meeting’s objectives were:
I. To bring stakeholders together and raise awareness at the national level on the need to have a national telemedicine and eHealth programme for Nigeria.
ii. To ascertain the readiness of stakeholders to deploy telemedicine and eHealth services within the healthcare delivery system in Nigeria
iii. To make recommendations on developing sustainable telemedicine and eHealth program in Nigeria