By Fred Shamakondo Njobvu, Provincial Coordinator Zambia, BID Initiative
Dec 24, 2014
We recently established a User Advisory Group (UAG) in the Livingstone District of Zambia! Similar to the Tanzania UAG, this group will play a critical role in the design and iteration of proposed solutions and interventions. The goal is to improve immunisation data quality, collection and use addressing the various challenges identified by the EPI program and other stakeholders in the district.
The Livingstone District is home to more than 160,000 people with 85 percent of the population living in urban areas and 15 percent in peri-urban areas. Of this population, 20 percent are children under five who require unique programs such as immunisation, nutrition, deworming, Vitamin A supplements and follow-up for exposed babies.
The new Livingstone District UAG consists of 13 members from a variety of staff in different of levels of the health system working in immunisation. Specifically, the group is made up of the District Community Medical Officer (DCMO), Principal Nursing Officer, District Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Coordinator, District Health Information Officer, Facility MCH in charge/alternate from each of the four testing facilities, two Neighbourhood Health Committee (NHC) Chairpersons from East and West Zones of the district and three BID Initiative staff members.
The preliminary UAG meeting was held last month and was chaired by the Principal Nursing Officer on behalf of the District Community Medical Officer. During the meeting, we shared background on the BID Initiative, discussed the immunisation challenges faced by the district, expectations and concerns of end users and finally, agreed on the terms of reference for the group.
Additionally, we determined the role of the UAG members:
We look forward to the invaluable contribution of this newly established group that will improve data collection, quality, and use at all levels of the health system.