With support from the Google Impact Challenge, The Assistive Technology Information Mapping (AT-Info-Map) Project partners – SAFOD, Dimagi, AfriNEAD and University of Washington – have embarked on an ambitious endeavor that aims to map the availability of Assistive Technologies (AT) in ten countries in southern Africa over 3 years.
Our technology partner, Dimagi, has developed the technology system (CommCare) that is being used in this project to collect and provide information about AT availability. CommCare is open source, is designed for use in low-resource settings and is a flexible system that can be easily modified to meet the needs of different users.
But how does CommCare system work in the AT-Info-Map project?
In CommCare, information can be collected through all types of cell phones, tablets, or computers, and will be stored and displayed online. Information is collected by asking users a series of questions, focused broadly on the following:
Information is being collected on what types or categories of AT are available through different AT suppliers.
Information is being collected on the geographical location of the AT providers.
Details about the suppliers is being collected, such as type of organization, how they can be contacted (address, email, telephone, website, etc). We are also considering to include information related to nature of legal registration of the supplier, and what insurance covers the provider.
The specific types of information being collected and displayed is being customized based on the needs of the stakeholders and can be adapted as needs change. For example, the Ministry of Health may want to see the big picture of what types of AT are available across the entire country, while a rehabilitation professional may want to know where is the nearest place to find a pair of crutches for his/her patient
Here, you can learn more about how the he current version, or V1, of the the At-Info-Map works.