International Journal of Information Engineering and Electronic Business(IJIEEB)

ISSN: 2074-9023 (Print), ISSN: 2074-9031 (Online)

Published By: MECS Press

IJIEEB Vol.5, No.4, Oct. 2013

Interoperability in Nigeria Healthcare System: The Ways Forward

Full Text (PDF, 119KB), PP.16-23

Views:205   Downloads:7


Iroju Olaronke,Gambo Ishaya,Ikono Rhoda,Olaleke Janet

Index Terms

Nigeria healthcare system;ICT;interoperability


Interoperability of health related information is one of the agendas of many counties in the world, with no exception to Nigeria and other developing countries. This is because healthcare costs are rising exponentially. However, interoperability of health related information seem largely unattainable in Nigeria due to reluctance to change from the traditional paper based healthcare system to the use of e-health systems, inadequate ICT infrastructure, poor utilization of the available ICT resources, erratic power supply, increased burden of underdevelopment, poverty, political instability, shortage of educational capacity in Nigeria rural and urban healthcare centers, low level of ICT awareness, poor maintenance culture as well as corruption. Consequently, the healthcare system in Nigeria is saddled with high cost, high rate of disease outbreak driven by HIV/AIDs, malaria and other infectious diseases which results in a high rate of mortality. Nevertheless, the urgent need to meaningfully exchange safe and reliable health information is a key priority to the healthcare system in Nigeria as the qualities of patients’ care depend majorly on the timely acquisition, processing and retrieval of data related to the patient. Thus, this paper attempts to unravel the factors hindering interoperability in the Nigeria healthcare system and suggests ways of making total interoperability a reality in Nigeria healthcare system as well as other developing countries.

Cite This Paper

Iroju Olaronke,Gambo Ishaya,Ikono Rhoda,Olaleke Janet,"Interoperability in Nigeria Healthcare System: The Ways Forward", IJIEEB, vol.5, no.4, pp.16-23, 2013. DOI: 10.5815/ijieeb.2013.04.03


[1]Idowu P, Cornford D, et al. Health informatics deployment in Nigeria [J]. Journal of Health Informatics in Developing Countries, 2008, 2:15-23.

[2]Ayodele, C.B. Hospital information systems in Nigeria: A review of literature [J]. Journal of Global Healthcare Systems, 2011, 1(3):1-26.

[3]Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Standard Computer Dictionary. A Compilation of IEEE Standard Computer Glossaries, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, USA, 1990.

[4]Heubusch K. Interoperability: What it means, why it matters [J]. Journal of AHIMA, 2006, 77(1):26-30.

[5]Gibbons P, Arzt N, et al. Stanford J. Coming to terms:scoping interoperability for healthcare[R]. United States of America: Health Level Seven International, 2007.

[6]Yum K.K, and Drogemuller R. How much interoperability can be achieved for the construction industry today?[A]. Hong Kong: INCITE World IT for design and construction, 2002.

[7]Dolin R, Alschuler L. Approaching semantic interoperability in Health level seven [J]. Journal of American Medical Information Association, 2011, 18:99-103.

[8]Khan W A, Hussain M, Latif K,et al. Process interoperability in healthcare systems with dynamic semantic web services[A]. Springer-Verlag Wien, 2013.

[9]Health Governance Initiative. On Semantic and Technical Interoperability[A]. United States of America: eHealth Governance Initiative, 2012.

[10]Rais A. Health Care Patterns and Planning in Developing Countries [A]. London: Greenwood Press, 1991.

[11]Federal Ministry of Health. The National health policy and strategy to achieve health for all Nigerians. Nigeria: Federal Ministry of Health, 1998.

[12]Oluwagbemi O, and Achimugu P. Lack of integration in software systems for health practitioners in Nigeria: The way forward [J]. Journal of Health Informatics in Developing Countries, 4(1): 47-51.

[13]Odusote A. O. ICT for Public Health Care Delivery in Nigeria: Challenges, Opportunities and Milestones[C]. In: Proceedings of e-Nigeria Conference, Abuja, Nigeria, 2010, 1-5.

[14]Iroju O, Soriyan A, et al. Interoperability in Healthcare: Benefits, challenges and resolutions[J]. International Journal of Innovation and Applied Studies, 2013, 3(1): 262-270.

[15]Akinyede R. O, Daramola O. A, et al. Towards delivering high quality healthcare through an integrated national health information system and telemedicine development, problems and recommended solutions [J]. Canadian Journal on Computing in Mathematics, Natural Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, 2012, 3(6):180-187.

[16]Business Day Newspaper. Absence of national eHealth strategy, threat to nation’s healthcare delivery [A].Nigeria: Business Day, 2012.

[17]Dzidonu C. An Analysis of the Role of ICTS to achieving the MDGS [R]. United States of America: Division for Public Administration and Development Management, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), 2010.

[18]Ayodele C. B. Hospital information systems in Nigeria: A review of literature [J]. Journal of Global Healthcare Systems, 2011, 1(3): 1-26.

[19]Bock C, Carnahan L, et al. Healthcare strategic focus area: clinical informatics [R]. United States of America: National Institute of Standards and Technology, 2005.

[20]Shvaiko P.Iterative Schema-Based semantic matching”, Trento: International Doctorate School, Information and Communication Technology Department, University of Trento, 2006.

[21]Lenz R, Beyer M, et al. Semantic integration in healthcare networks [J]. Connecting Medical Informatics and Bio-Informatics, 2005, 385-390.

[22]Friedman C. Semantic text parsing for patient records [A]. Department of Biomedical Informatics [A], New York: Columbia University Press, 2005.

[23]Bittner T, Donnelly M, et al. Ontology and semantic interoperability. Institute for Formal Ontology and Medical Information Science (IFOMIS). Saarland: Saarland University, 2006.

[24]Arikpo A, Etor R, et al. Development imperatives for the twenty-first century in Nigeria [J]. Journal of Convergence, 2007, 40(1): 55-66. 

[25]Nwogbo K. Underpinning Health Care with ICT [A]. Nigeria: Nigeria Communication Week, 2005.