ICT and Health System Performance in Africa: A Multi-Method Approach
For the past two decades, the discussion regarding the effect of ICT on health systems is becoming apparent. However, past studies have mainly focused on ICT impact on specific social-economic phenomena. Little empirical research on ICT and health systems exists. Many African countries have invested in ICT and there is a need to examine if such investments have impacted on health system of these countries. Using a multi-method approach, data for 27 African countries were analysed. We employed Data Envelopment Analysis, Cluster Analysis and Partial Least Squares to examine the impact. The findings indicate that the 27 countries can be grouped into three clusters based on their relative efficiency scores of ICT and health systems. More compelling, the findings indicate that countries that performed efficiently in ICT inputs also do so in their health systems. Further, findings indicate that ICT significantly improves life expectancy at birth and reduces infant mortality rate. African countries must significantly invest in ICT to improve their health systems so as to achieve socio-economic development. The current study has theoretical, methodological and policy implications.