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New strategy and systems cement Tanzania’s digital health leadership

Feb 18, 2020

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The Government of Tanzania is calling for an end to “pilotitis”—an emphasis on narrowly focused health interventions, small populations, and vertical health programs. Last November, the country made great strides toward this goal and digital transformation with the launch of a new Digital Health Strategy (2019—2024) and a series of systems that will greatly improve coordination between partners in the health sector.

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Lessons from the frontlines of the digital revolution: The BID Learning Network mentors countries invested in digital solutions

Jan 23, 2020

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Since 2014, the BID Learning Network (BLN) has brought together digital health experts and immunization program managers from across sub-Saharan Africa to share experiences about implementing electronic immunization registries (EIRs), data management systems, change management approaches, and data use policies and practices. The BLN has since expanded its scope to provide a set of holistic services and mentorship on the design, implementation, and scale-up of digital and data solutions to address routine data challenges. For the past few years, the BLN has been mentoring a range of countries interested in adopting digital and data solutions of their own.

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Zambia’s Ministry of Health collaborates with BID and others to strengthen immunization system

Jan 9, 2020

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The Zambian Ministry of Health (MOH) is taking an innovative, new direction to close the country’s immunization gap with a new partnership that touches every component of the immunization system. The EPI Optimization (EPI-OPT) strategy brings together a consortium of technical experts and partners working collaboratively with the government to improve coverage rates.

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Publication round-up: BID publishes new costing data, learnings, and best practices

Dec 3, 2019

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The BID Initiative is committed to advancing the global evidence base around data quality and use interventions to improve immunization service delivery. Informed by our own progress in Tanzania and Zambia, we recently published a series of journal articles and publications that demonstrate the impact of electronic immunization registries (EIRs) on cost savings, vaccine stock levels, and data quality, among other areas. This is a round-up of recent publications and some of the learnings from each.

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New Vietnam case study highlights lessons learned around key partnerships with mobile network operators and electronic immunization registries

Oct 18, 2019

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The Introducing Digital immunization information systems- Exchange And Learning (IDEAL-VN) project is a PATH-led initiative working to explore and disseminate evidence and lessons learned from Vietnam’s implementation of the, Vietnam’s nationwide electronic immunization registry (EIR), to support successful implementation of EIRs in other countries.

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Launching the future of data

Oct 2, 2019

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Tanzania has made strides in embracing digital platforms within its health system. Health workers, for example, are using defaulter lists from the Tanzania Immunization Registry (TImR) to trace patients who have missed vaccines in the vast Ngorongoro District, which has previously struggled to retain children within immunization programs because of the district’s nomadic communities. Health workers in Tanga are also witnessing firsthand the full advantages of using an exclusively electronic system. And in June, the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children (MOHCDGDEC) and the Immunization and Vaccines Development (IVD) program took another step towards Tanzania’s digital future.

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The key to better primary health care? Human-centered design

Sep 10, 2019

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Human-centered design is an approach to problem-solving that puts people first. Their needs, their constraints, their contexts and their perspectives. It focuses on users—not necessarily what designers, researchers, or others think users need.

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BLN members convene in Lusaka to trade learnings, share progress on digital journey

Aug 28, 2019

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Members of the BID Learning Network (BLN) and Gavi Data Quality and Use (DQU) Collaborative met in Lusaka, Zambia last month  from July 24 to 26 to share experiences from their respective countries, partner to overcome their challenges around immunization service delivery, and further develop and refine their data quality improvement (DQI) plans. Attendees included country representatives from The Gambia, Mozambique, Liberia, Uganda, Cameroon, Burkina Faso, Senegal, Malawi, and Zambia. Each country is at a slightly different place in their efforts to adopt data quality and use interventions to improve immunization, and so were paired throughout the meeting for peer review of their country plans.

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New publication defines building blocks for a successful electronic immunization registry

Aug 13, 2019

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The BID Initiative has just released an exciting new publication that will benefit other countries interested in implementing their own electronic immunization registries (EIRs). In the new journal article, “Electronic immunization registries in Tanzania and Zambia: Shaping a minimum viable product for scaled solutions,” which appeared in the multi-disciplinary, open-access journal, Frontiers in Public Health, BID hopes to help other countries avoid the costly, time-consuming, and complex ramp-up often required of these digital platforms.  

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Preparing the health workforce to make the most of data

Aug 5, 2019

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For nearly thirty years as a health worker in Tanzania, Salome has used pen and paper to record patient data. A digital transformation promises to streamline her work and improve patient care.

Digital health solutions increase data quality and accessibility, but to be effective and improve patient outcomes, health workers must know how to make the most of the information. For many like Salome, Tanzania’s digital transformation will require retraining and developing new digital literacy skills.

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