Data for Decision-making encompasses the process of data collection, data processing and data analysis in order to take adequate decisions for managing health services. Relevant data are collected in routine information systems and non-routine systems (e.g. , Survey, Sueveillance and other research). In response to the increasing demand for reliable and timely data in the health sector, countries are seeking to leverage investments, technologies and partnerships to advance their information systems.Accountability, including performance measurement and resource tracking, compels the participation of both citizens and government, empowering both to take responsibility for developing a strong, effective and sustainable system. Well-functioning data platforms that serve as the basis for reporting,transparent reviewsand informed decision-making at all levels can enable countries to drivetheir own health priorities and improve the wellbeing of their populations.
In MA4H conference, the regional countries identified a set of priority actions and targets that aimed to strengthen country data and accountability systems, as well as management processes for the SDG3. These included: (i) increasing the level and efficiency of investments; (ii) strengthening institutional capacity to collect, compile, disseminate and use data for decision-making; (iii) improving country data sources; (iv) maximizing effective use of the data revolution based on open data standards; and (iv) enhancing accountability and management systems.
WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA icddr,b, HISP Bangladesh, Vital Strategy, other development partners and private sector have been supporting MoH&FW for a robust health information system in the country. GIZ has been providing technical assistance since 2009 pioneering implementation of DHIS2 for nation-wide e-MIS in Bangladesh. UNICEF along with other development partners have been working for improving health manager’s capacity on information management in all 64 districts and implementing evidence-based planning and budgeting (DEPB) using real time information system in 24 districts. Defaulter tracking system has been developed and implemented for better planning and decision making. EU funded project at icddr,b has been supporting DGHS, MoH&FW, for enhancing health managers’ capacity on use of data, and, data visualization through publicly accessed dashboards.
The countries including Bangladesh still face considerable challenges including multiplicity of monitoring and evaluation (M&E) plans, vertical or single topic data collection systems, isolated or parallel reporting systems, disjointed efforts and investments in the use of innovations, disparate and inaccessible databases, lack of institutional capacity, and limited analysis and use of data for decision-making and remedial action. Data from research are not shared in information systems.
Under this backdrop, the D4D in Health conference will highlight the global and regional progress to date in strengthening Health Management Information System (HMIS), showcase innovations from institutes, academics and development partners across the world, present the country status on ensuring access to information, data visualization, and, the accountability and management of the system. The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) health data collection and reporting requirements will be addressed in this timely conference.