The BID Initiative team, along with other members of PATH’s Center for Data and Digital Excellence will be joining colleagues and collaborators from around the world for the 2019 Global Digital Health Forum. This year’s Forum – Celebrating Innovation and Supporting Proven Practices at Scale – seeks to balance the need for evidence-based scaling of proven systems with the urgent need to determine how emerging technologies and approaches can dramatically improve health outcomes.
Between 2013 and 2018, BID designed, developed, and introduced an electronic immunization registry in three regions in Tanzania and one province in Zambia. The Initiative’s financial records were used to account for the financial costs of designing and developing the EIRs, BID staff time, expenditures for rolling out the EIR systems and the related suite of interventions to health facilities, and recurrent costs. Total financial costs, cost per facility and cost per child were calculated in 2018 US$. By documenting the costs associated with introducing an EIR, BID hopes to help other countries introduce more affordable platforms for their own health landscapes. Read the full article in BMJ Global Health.
Since 2016, the Government of Tanzania has been implementing TImR, an integrated Electronic Immunization registry-logistics management information system (EIR-LMIS) that includes stock notifications. Working in close partnership with the Government of Tanzania, PATH conducted a study to estimate the impact of this intervention on vaccine availability. The findings of this study were published in Vaccine.
The BID Learning Network (BLN)/Gavi Data Quality and Use (DQU) Collaborative convened a meeting between July 24-26, 2019 in Lusaka, Zambia. It was attended by 25 participants, including immunization data managers from Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, The Gambia, Uganda, and Zambia. This post includes the full meeting reports, including French and English translations.
As health experts, governments, and policymakers around the world harmonize their goals to improve health outcomes through the use of better data and digital tools, the importance of partnerships with key technology stakeholders has become increasingly apparent. With extensive reach among populations, resources, and innovative tools, mobile network operators (MNOs) have a huge potential to strengthen interconnections between the health and technology sectors, and the populations they serve. However, documented guidance on selecting an MNO partner, as well as facilitating and maintaining such a partnership, is currently lacking. After reviewing the successful 2014 pilot of a digital immunization registry that was implemented by the global health nonprofit organization PATH in Ben Tre province, the Ministry of Health (MOH) of Vietnam partnered with Viettel Business Solutions (Viettel), Vietnam’s largest MNO, and PATH to develop and scale up the National Immunization Information System (NIIS), the electronic immunization registry (EIR) that is being implemented today.
The governments of Tanzania and Zambia identified key data-related challenges affecting immunization service delivery including identifying children due for vaccines, time-consuming data entry processes, and inadequate resources. To address these challenges, since 2014, the countries have partnered with PATH’s Better Immunization Data (BID) Initiative to design and deploy a suite of data quality and use interventions. Two key aspects of the interventions were an electronic immunization registry and tools and practices to strengthen a culture of data use. As both countries deployed the interventions, three distinct changes in data use emerged organically. This article provides a detailed summary of these three phases or waves, based mostly on qualitative data or observation: (1) strengthening data collection using new data collection tools and processes and increasing efficiency of health workers; (2) improving data quality regarding accuracy and completeness; and (3) increasing use of data to take action to strengthen their work and for programmatic decision making. These waves clearly demonstrated the growing ability of health workers to move from data collectors to data analyzers who began to focus on the data quality and then the value of using the data in their day-to-day activities. For the full article, visit Global Health: Science and Practice.
The BID Learning Network (BLN)/Gavi Data Quality and Use (DQU) Collaborative convened a meeting between July 24-26, 2019 in Lusaka, Zambia. It was attended by 25 participants, including immunization data managers from Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, The Gambia, Uganda, and Zambia. This post includes presentations from the meeting.
The BID Learning Network invites you to view a webinar presentation titled “Cultivating a Data Use Culture: Lessons Learned from the BID Initiative.” Global and national stakeholders have acknowledged that routine immunization programs face significant challenges related to the collection, availability, and use of data for planning, management, and improvement of program performance. To address these critical data challenges, the BID Initiative worked with the governments of Tanzania and Zambia, to introduce a suite of interventions at facility and district levels.
As part of the work the BID Initiative undertook starting in 2013 to improve countries’ collection, quality, and use of immunization data, PATH partnered with countries to identify the critical requirements for an electronic immunization registry (EIR). An EIR became the core intervention to address the data challenges that countries faced but also presented complexities during the development process to ensure that it met the core needs of the users. The work began with collecting common system requirements from 10 sub-Saharan African countries; these requirements represented the countries’ vision of an ideal system to track individual child vaccination schedules and elements of supply chain. Through iterative development processes in both Tanzania and Zambia, the common requirements were modified and adapted to better fit the country contexts and users’ needs, as well as to be developed with the technology available at the time. This process happened across four different software platforms. The BID Initiative recently published a paper to Frontiers in Public Health that outlines the process undertaken and analyzes similarities and differences across the iterations of the EIR in both countries, culminating in the development of a registry in Zambia that includes the most critical aspects required for initially deploying the registry and embodies what could be considered the minimum viable product for an EIR. Read the full article in Frontiers in Public Heath.
Preventable disease, emerging infectious disease, extreme weather-related disasters due to urbanization and environmental degradation, and complications of pregnancy and childbirth still claim far too many lives and challenge the ability of health systems to cope. Meanwhile, shrinking investments, flat country health budgets, population pressures, and complex emergencies challenge the global ability to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Some of the world’s experts were convened by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), which funds MEASURE Evaluation, to take on the topic at its conference in Washington, DC, in March 2019 at a meeting, From Fragile to Resilient Health Systems: A Journey to Self-Reliance. The group addressed multiple factors affecting how health systems are able to respond to routine health challenges and emergencies. The full report is available here.