• United front

    United front

    Public-private partnerships are working to provide South Africans with improved access to healthcare and education through ICT services, amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    The national Department of Communications and Digital Technologies (DTPS) has collaborated with private companies to provide broadband internet connectivity to approximately 480 COVID-19 mission-critical health centres countrywide. This will enable remote health facilities to transfer patient files and conduct statistical reporting, medical analysis and consultations, according to the South African Government News Agency.

    As directed by the DTPS, regulatory body ICASA also assigned temporary radio frequency spectrum to mobile network operators to ensure citizens are able to access ICT services, government programmes and COVID-related information.

    Together with mobile network operators and internet service providers, the DTPS is also working with the departments of Basic and Higher Education to provide local, zero-rated websites for educational purposes. Close to 990 sites have already been set up, with more pending approval.

    18 August 2020
    Image: Gallo/Getty Images