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Integrating Family Planning Data in Kenya’s DHIS 2

Integrating Family Planning Data in Kenya's DHIS 2Kenya’s health information system (HIS) for family planning (FP) is fragmented, preventing the integration of data from multiple sources in meaningful information products. This fragmentation limits the accessibility of data for decision making. Although FP is the second most-funded health program in Kenya in terms of money spent on commodities (primarily short-term contraceptive methods), FP funding is not equitably distributed to other components of the health system, such as human resources, infrastructure, and HIS resources and training (including DHIS 2, a web-based health management information system used to monitor health indicators at the county and national levels).

With support from MEASURE Evaluation (funded by the United States Agency for International Development), this study investigated integration of FP data in DHIS 2, the factors related to lack of integration, and ways to remedy the lack of integration. Finally, this report presents several recommendations for integrating FP data in Kenya’s DHIS 2.

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Measuring Family Planning Service Delivery: An Assessment of Selected Indicators across Implementing Partners

Measuring Family Planning Service Delivery: An Assessment of Selected Indicators across Implementing PartnersFamily planning (FP) service delivery is a key component of the global health program of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and there is a long tradition of measuring FP service delivery activities and outcomes through indicators that are internationally standardized and program-specific. Although it is essential for understanding the content, quantity, and quality of services being provided with U.S. government assistance, the monitoring and evaluation of FP service delivery faces many challenges. USAID technical advisors asked USAID-funded MEASURE Evaluation to assess a set of 16 indicators and five indicator areas that may be used to measure service delivery activities by USAID’s implementing partners (IPs). Information and feedback on the use of the selected indicators were collected from eight service delivery IPs and seven technical resources. The information was assessed for common trends and reported challenges. Indicator guidance for FP service delivery projects was then developed and applied to the selected indicators.

This assessment provides a summary and analysis of IP feedback and indicator-specific recommendations. It also offers recommendations and guidance for each of the selected indicators and indicator areas, based on whether a project will be using the information for monitoring or process evaluation only or will also be conducting an outcome or impact evaluation.

This report also provides specific criteria to guide USAID and IPs in the selection of FP service delivery indicators, and it can be used to inform USAID service delivery measurement among IPs.

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HIV-Related Data on Very Young Adolescents

HIV-Related Data on Very Young AdolescentsVery young adolescents (VYAs)—those between the ages of 10 and 14—represent about half of the 1.2 billion adolescents ages 10–19 in the world. A technical working group that the World Health Organization (WHO) convened in 2010 observed that, although adolescents ages 15–19 have been the main population segment addressed by adolescent health and development programs, the “special needs and concerns of young adolescents ages 10–14—some of whom are already sexually active—have been relatively neglected.” This neglect is, to some extent, a result of a lack of global HIV-related data for VYAs.

The Inter-Agency Task Team on Young People and HIV/AIDS (IATT/YP) strategic information (SI) working group, co-convened by UNICEF and UNFPA and made up of a core group of international and national agencies, including the U.S. Agency for International Development and MEASURE Evaluation, seeks to accelerate the global response to HIV prevention for young people ages 10–24 by improving the availability and accessibility of high-quality data related to youth HIV. Capitalizing on the 2010 WHO meeting, the IATT/YP SI working group met in June 2014 to discuss categories of HIV-related information that can and should be collected for VYAs. This brief focuses on available HIV-related data for VYAs.

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Videos: Patient Wait Times

Four videos from MEASURE Evaluation SIFSA address patient wait times at health facilities. Access the videos.

SIFSA Animated Video Slide

Core Competencies for Postgraduate Evaluation Courses: Report of the GEMNet-Health Task Group

Core Competencies for Postgraduate Evaluation Courses: Report of the GEMNet-Health Task GroupThe Global Evaluation and Monitoring Network for Health (GEMNet-Health) is a global network of public health institutions whose purpose is to foster organizational growth, collaboration, and mutual support for monitoring and evaluation (M&E) of health programs through linkages among members. As countries seek to improve their M&E capacities, they need specific training in evaluation at the postgraduate level. The GEMNet-Health Steering Committee convened a time-limited technical task group to address this need. This Task Group on Core Competencies for Postgraduate Evaluation Courses sought to develop core competencies for a 60-hour master’s level overview course in evaluation. The aim of the task group was to identify a set of essential competencies and corresponding core elements of curricula for postgraduate evaluation courses, which would help GEMNet-Health member institutions develop a consistent and coordinated approach to evaluation training.

This report presents background on the task group’s approach, including the reasons for following a competency-based approach to evaluation training. Then, building on a review of competencies from postgraduate-level evaluation courses at several dozen universities, the report identifies core evaluation competencies organized by skill level and topic. It concludes with recommendations for core and optional competencies for an overview evaluation course at the master’s level.

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Effective Linkages from Point of HIV Testing to Care and Treatment in Tanga Region, Tanzania

Effective Linkages from Point of HIV Testing to Care and Treatment in Tanga Region, TanzaniaHIV testing and counselling services in Tanzania have expanded rapidly to ensure that people living with HIV (PLHIV) receive antiretroviral therapy (ART) and that ART is initiated at the right time. Clients who present late for HIV care and treatment may miss out on timely initiation of prophylaxis and ART, which may accelerate disease progression and lead to an increased rate of HIV transmission within the community. Linkage to care and treatment is an important part of efforts to accelerate HIV prevention, treatment, care, and support, because It offers an opportunity for PLHIV to receive information and services in a timely manner. The objective of this study was to determine the factors influencing effective linkages of newly diagnosed PLHIV from the point of testing to entry in care and treatment centres (CTCs) in Tanga Region, Tanzania.

This cross-sectional study examined five clinics with a high volume of clients in each of the three districts in Tanga Region. Interviews with the sampled CTC clients obtained quantitative data while focus group discussions with healthcare providers and in-depth interviews with CTC clients yielded qualitative information. The outcome of interest was whether a client enrolled in a CTC within three months of his or her first positive HIV test.

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Bridging the gaps in Mali’s disease surveillance system

Bridging the gaps in Mali’s disease surveillance system The outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in West Africa in 2014 exposed the weaknesses of disease surveillance systems in resource-limited countries and highlighted the need for better coordination of disease surveillance at the global level. Unprepared to respond to the EVD epidemic, Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone were the most affected countries, with over 11,000 lives lost. The epidemic eventually spread to Mali, a neighboring country to Guinea, and resulted in eight cases and an additional six deaths. A number of factors—including poor coordination, insufficient human resources, limited access to information technology, and inadequate data tools—continue to challenge the disease surveillance system in Mali. These result in poor data quality and timeliness for informed decision making in health.

This resource focuses on how MEASURE Evaluation has been supporting the national malaria control program (NMCP) and the Direction National de la Santé (DNS) in strengthening routine health information systems.

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