Leveraging Tech to Improve Access to Specialist Healthcare

Photo: Dr. William Mapham H’18

In today’s episode we feature Dr. William Mapham H’18, University of Stellenbosch, the founder of Vula Mobile. Vula gives health workers, particularly those in remote rural areas, a tool to get patients quick and efficient specialist care. The app was initially created for ophthalmology referrals, but it quickly became clear that the functionality provided by Vula was widely needed. A redesign enabled the app to scale and now includes referrals for any number of specialties.

Mapham shares the Vula story, which came from his own experience as a rural health worker in South Africa and Swaziland and then as a specialist in public health. This journey, coupled with his tech background, was the catalyst for Vula. The app serves more than 11 000 health workers, growing daily by up to 20 users, becoming increasingly useful for a wider audience and making a difference.

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