As technology has become cheaper and more accessible, health programs are adopting digital health interventions (DHI) to improve the provision of and demand for health services. These interventions are complex and require strong coordination and support across different health system levels and government departments, and they need significant capacities in technology and information to be properly implemented. Electronic immunization registries (EIRs) are types of DHI used to capture, store, access, and share individual-level, longitudinal health information in digitized records. The BID Initiative worked in partnership with the governments of Tanzania and Zambia to introduce an EIR at the sub-national level in both countries within 5 years as part of a multi-component complex intervention package focusing on data use capacity-building. We aimed to gather and describe learnings from the BID experience by conducting a framework-based mixed methods study to describe perceptions of factors that influenced scale-up of the EIR. Read the full article in Implementation Science Communications.
The BID Learning Network invites you to watch a webinar panel discussion on “The Design, Development and Deployment of an Electronic Immunization Registry in Vietnam: Reflections, Guidance and Global Comparison.” The Introducing Digital Immunization information systems – Exchange And Learning from Vietnam (IDEAL-Vietnam) is a PATH project funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation which has been working closely with Vietnam’s Ministry of Health in facilitating a successful transition from paper records to a completely paperless immunization record system.
Pakistan, Zambia, and Kenya are among a growing number of countries implementing electronic immunization registries (EIRs) to improve data quality and health facility performance. But EIRs can be costly to design and introduce. This case study explores the localization and adaptation of OpenSRP’s immunization module, the benefits of iterating on open-source software, and lessons learned during use in Pakistan, Zambia, and Kenya.
Since 2014, the BID Learning Network (BLN) has hosted learning exchanges, webinars, system demonstrations, and rich dialogues about digital and data solutions as a collaborative, country-owned peer learning network. Recently, the BLN expanded its scope to provide a set of holistic services that leverage our deep expertise, and those of partners on the design, implementation, and scale-up of digital and data solutions for routine health data. Our expanded commitment to peer learning will include advisory, capacity building, and knowledge management services for countries hoping to improve their own health information systems.
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.