Health Information: Our Impact

 Screenshot of SIAPS West Africa Regional Project dashboard shows national stock status in Niger; three products in blue have more than 100 months in stock.

Alerts of stock-outs of life-saving medicines for antiretroviral therapy (ART) and treating opportunistic infections have emerged from a number of countries in West Africa. Several root causes of stock-outs have been identified such as poor coordination and information sharing among partners.

Dr. Andrew Nyandigisi from the Malaria Control Unit discusses lessons learned in the implementation of DHIS2 with workshop participants. {Photo credit: Yvonne Otieno/MSH.}Photo credit: Yvonne Otieno/MSH.

An effective reporting system for health commodities is critical to ensure accountability, enable informed decision making, and provide timely access to information. Using DHIS2 to Manage Data for Malaria Commodities

 {Photo credit: Philbert Rugumire/MSH}Data managers in training at Rubavu District Western Province.Photo credit: Philbert Rugumire/MSH

Rwanda, like many developing countries, has faced major challenges regarding access to accurate health information, such as attendance rates at clinics or statistics on treatments provided. Previously multiple procedures were in place, at times collecting duplicative data, which overwhelmed health workers in charge of collecting the information. The national health management information systems required installing software in each of the computers using the system. There was no way to access data from other computers.

 {Photo credit: Adedayo Adeyemo/MSH}CUBS staff explore the mobile application.Photo credit: Adedayo Adeyemo/MSH

By Obialunamma Onoh, Zipporah Kpamor, Ugboga Adaji,Benjamin Akinmoyeje, Hope Ohiembor, Irene Amadu, Steven Shadrack, and Tokara Kabati  HIV & AIDS impacts millions in sub-Saharan Africa, contributing to a steady growth in the population of orphans and vulnerable children (OVC). In 2008, data from Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Women Affairs showed that 25 percent of Nigerian children were orphans or considered vulnerable due to unmet needs for nutrition, education, shelter, care, or support.

Mr. Sello Lechesa, a pharmacy technician and RxSolution user in the ART pharmacy at Maluti Adventist Hospital. {Photo credit: MSH staff/Lesotho}Photo credit: MSH staff/Lesotho

Lesotho’s pharmaceutical sector faced two formidable challenges: the unreliable supply of essential medicines and the unknown quality of medicines circulating in the country. Inefficiencies within the supply chain system were at the root of both problems, specifically weak information management systems that did not support decision-making in the supply chain.

Using RapidSMS, a community health worker requested an ambulance to transport Dorcelle to the Musanze Health Center, where she delivered a healthy baby. {Photo credit: Candide Tran Ngoc/MSH.}Photo credit: Candide Tran Ngoc/MSH.

In 2011, Drocelle gave birth to her fourth child, and, for the first time, delivered at a health center. Throughout her pregnancy, Drocelle had been monitored by a community health worker, Elizabeth, who regularly visited her at home and encouraged her to go to the Musanze Health Center for antenatal care. When Drocelle went into labor, she contacted Elizabeth, who sent a RapidSMS text message to the Musanze Health Center requesting an ambulance. Without the ambulance, it would have taken Drocelle three hours to walk to Musanze Health Center.

Two websites supported by Management Sciences for Health (MSH) have increased usage and reach as of March 2011. These tools are important HIV resources for the global health community to help build capacity and share best practices.

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