MOH News

MOH Growth in IT… Ranking the 1st through Its Portal
09 October 2011
   Ministry of Health is growing and developing in using modern technology in the field of computing and information in addition to Cloud Computing System. The Ministry was ranked the first among governmental bodies in the Kingdom through its portal, as MOH has met the standards of the United Nations in applying e-government.
At a press conference held in the Ministry headquarters yesterday, Dr. Mohammed R. Al Yemeni, Advisor to the Minister, and Supervisor-General of ICT, stated that the Ministry of Health was ranked the first among the Kingdom's governmental bodies evaluated by Yasser e-Government project, including 102 standards developed by the United Nations to measure the development of nations in e-government applications.
He revealed that the Information and Communication Technology Department at the Ministry of Health has recently launched the first and second phases of its Private Cloud Computing, which is the first private Cloud Computing System to be utilized in the Kingdom’s public and health sectors, becoming a pioneer in applying this modern technology in the cloud computing field. This will have a great impact on progressing to advanced levels in the quality of information and communication technology at the Ministry and all its facilities, in addition to widening the scope of their optimum utilization.
Dr. Mohammed R. Al Yemeni clarified that the project provides infrastructure services (IaaS), which will allow the Ministry to benefit the most from its investments in the field of information and communications technology.  The system will empower workers in information centers to provide users with fast and efficient infrastructure services.
Moreover, he said “This is but the first step in an ambitious project to improve this service.  The project also will be providing such services as “PaaS” and “SaaS” in the near future,”
Dr. Al Yemeni added “Launching this phase of the service enables the Ministry to double the number of virtual servers quickly and with a high level of flexibility. This environment supports a large number of operating systems, memory capacities and storage units. All these services can be managed through a Single Pane of Glass. Using the Self-Service Portal reduces the required time to meet users’ needs from a matter of weeks to just a few hours.”
According to Dr. Al Yemeni, the Cloud Computing System will be used to provide more effective services at the facilities of the Ministry, hospitals and primary care centers, which will provide flexibility to serve patients. This technology will enable them to use applications in the Cloud Computing System, so that there will be no need to rely on local networks or servers that require space and maintenance…etc.
All you need, to use the Cloud Computing System technology, is a computer connected to the Internet, regardless of the kind of hardware or software used. In other words, the use of computer won’t be confined to the computers available in health facilities, but it will be accessed through the Internet. Data processing will be transmitted across networks to other servers, that save the user’s files and give him access to his stored files from anywhere on any device. Thus, programs will be just services and the user’s computer will be just a digital access.
Dr. Al Yemeni indicated that this technology has enabled the Ministry to raise the capacity of the support servers from 96 servers to more than 1400 servers, using server virtualization technology to allow multiple users to use the same service.
Moreover, 105 hospitals, 20 Health Affairs Directorates in addition to specialized centers like the centers of heart and kidney diseases were linked to the Cloud Computing System. The project has saved the Ministry about 30% of the costs.
In the same context, Advisor to the Minister & General Supervisor of ICT, stated that the Ministry of Health portal, though newly launched, was ranked the first with 99% among governmental bodies in the Kingdom in the classification of electronic transactions (Yasser). Yasser has performed the evaluation in cooperation with an international company specialized in this field. They conducted a comprehensive survey of the Kingdom’s participating Ministries. The survey included the provided electronic services and their accessibility. This competition comes within the preparation of the Saudi government to participate in the final report of the exerted efforts to improve the Kingdom’s rank in UN Global E-government Readiness Report.
Al Yemeni was quoted as saying: "The strategic plan for the portal project was developed to meet the desire of citizens by facilitating their MOH-related transactions and inquiries. The outstanding result is the outcome of the huge efforts exerted by the portal team, since it was a mere idea until it's brought into being".
"There is no doubt that having such an evaluation in the level of the Kingdom’s government bodies will have a positive impact in the future. Everyone will be keen to achieve the best results during the upcoming competitions, where a clear mechanism will be developed to support the efforts of government bodies exerted to improve their portals,” he added.
Dr. Al Yemeni concluded his statement saying: "MOH portal clarifies that citizens and health beneficiaries are the number one on the list of the Ministry's top concerns. The portal is distinguished by being a vital channel for interaction and continuous communication between the Ministry and its visitors, depending on the latest technologies that allow easy access to its extensive content. It is also compatible with most popular browsers. In addition, the portal includes an electronic reader, which reads texts and contents of the site, as well as mobile application and handheld version to benefit from the portal services via different devices."
It is worth mentioning that His Excellency the Minister of Health, Dr. Abdullah Bin AbdulAziz Al-Rabeeah has inaugurated, in June 2011, the new portal of the Ministry of Health as one of MOH E-Health National Project achievements.

Last Update : 11 October 2011 09:28 AM
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