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What are the stages of progression to a strong HIS and how are they measured?

by on January 10, 2019

What are the stages of progression to a strong HIS and how are they measured?Strong health information systems (HIS) are essential for a country to meet its health goals. Health information is critical for monitoring, tracking, and solving some of the world’s most important health threats. We need to know if we are making progress in eradicating and preventing disease, to plan for and allocate needed resources, and to evaluate the effectiveness of health interventions. A national HIS encompasses all sources of health data to answer these questions and to help a country plan and implement its national health strategy.

Examples of HIS data sources are records on patient care, health facility data, surveillance data, census data, population surveys, vital event records, human resource records, financial data, infrastructure data, and logistics and supply data (MEASURE Evaluation, 2017a). A strong HIS should be well-defined, comprehensive, functional, adaptable and scalable, and resilient. The system should be able to collect, manage, analyze, and disseminate health data in a timely manner so that managers can make decisions, track progress, and provide feedback on HIS performance to improve data quality and use.

To accomplish these tasks, it is essential for HIS stakeholders to know the state of their system on the continuum to a strong HIS and to understand what is needed to achieve an optimized HIS. This document defines five stages of progression to a strong HIS, as described in our HIS Stages of Continuous Improvement (SOCI) tool kit. The five stages are: (1) emerging/ad hoc, (2) repeatable, (3) defined, (4) managed, and (5) optimized.

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