When we first started this work (in Ethiopia) about seven years ago, when customers came to a warehouse in search of their medicines, the pharmacist had to run down to the warehouse to check if they had an item (it took too long to find the stock card). Now they can access the data the same way as my Walgreens pharmacist can. And they can look to see if the stock is available at any of the other warehouses (even if the nearest location might be a day away).
In 2013, JSI began assessing the quality of the data collected on six key indicators related to HIV by performing data quality assessments at health facilities in Mozambique. These assessments evaluate data collected at the facility level and compare recorded data to data captured at the national level in order to determine discrepancies and improve overall data quality.
The resilience of a health system is to not only withstand sudden disasters, natural or man-made, but to also deal with the slow, progressive crisis that erodes the ability to meet a growing demand of health services from the population.
Countries and development partners have made progress in strengthening data collection and deploying technologies to move data up the health system for monitoring and evaluating performance. But to realize the transformative power of information, it is the frontline healthcare workers—the doctors, nurses, community health workers, etc.—who require information to make informed, intelligent decisions.
We have a learning model at MEval-SIFSA where we’ve itemised what defines a health system as “functioning.” For us, a strong, functioning system is one that takes you through the entire data management process and evaluates how the data is gathered, interpreted and analysed. But most importantly, a functioning system uses data to maximise a health programme’s impact and improve health outcomes.
We work with clients and countries around the globe to deploy innovative user-centered logistics management information systems (LMIS) and other tools that help people make better decisions and take effective action. We have learned a lot from these experiences, such as: What makes a system implementation successful? Once data is available, how can it be used to make decisions and improve performance? What other HIS solutions and processes are linked to these digital LMIS? We will be sharing stories and lessons learned specifically from Zambia, Tanzania and Ethiopia through our Digital LMIS Innovations Blog Series.
Developing countries often face the unexpected: disease outbreaks, natural disasters, and political unrest. To sustain advances in their health systems while safeguarding communities, health staff and organizations need strategies that promote system resilience—the capacity to anticipate and respond to crises; maintain core functions when shocks strike; and reorganize when extreme conditions or circumstances arise.
The efforts of the Supply Chain Management System (SCMS) project have helped to ensure that a hospital pharmacy in Haiti is consistently stocked with life-saving HIV medication.
JSI’s Tariq Azim reports from the first regional conference on Measurement and Accountability for Health in Dhaka, Bangladesh
Today is Innovation Day during World Immunization Week, and there are a lot of innovative ideas out there to reach every child. But innovation doesn’t always require radical new ideas. Sometimes it simply means challenging traditional approaches based on current information. For immunization supply chains, that means changing over 40 years of custom to embrace state-of-the-art commercial best practices.