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Monthly Update – June 9, 2016

Welcome to the fifth issue of the Health Data Collaborative Monthly Update. We are pleased to bring you the latest news from the Collaborative's partners, who are adopting a new aligned approach to working with countries to strengthen national health information systems, improve the quality of their health data and track progress toward the health-related Sustainable Development Goals. Please join the conversation on Twitter.

Launch of Kenya Health Data Collaborative
The Kenya Ministry of Health hosted a launch event on May 18 in Nairobi, where representatives from national and county governments, development partners, faith-based organizations, private sector organizations and civil society signed a joint statement of commitments to support a unified “One M&E Framework.”  A detailed roadmap was developed with a focus on data analytics, quality of care, a new national health data observatory, civil registration and vital statistics and informatics. Progress will be reported to the National Health Congress in November.  

Please visit the SharePoint to access documents on Health Data Collaborative work by country and by working group. To obtain login access to this internal documents portal, please contact Florence Rusciano at For further information on country activities, please contact Eduardo Celades at

Sierra Leone: Priority M&E Actions Identified 

The Ministry of Health and Sanitation on May 12 organized a workshop to identify monitoring and evaluation (M&E) priority actions, with participation from a joint WHO-World Bank Group mission. Four priority actions were identified: 1) implement a health facility survey, including a quality of care component; 2) support the MoH in finalizing the Health Information Strategic Plan; 3) provide guidance and technical assistance to strengthen data quality and analysis at central and district levels; 4) provide guidance and technical support to map functionality of the health facility information systems, including developing and adopting an interoperability framework for the HIS system.

Malawi: Common M&E Investment Framework in Progress

A costed M&E plan will form the basis of a common M&E investment framework that will be endorsed by Collaborative partners ahead of the finalized new Health Sector Strategic Plan (HSSP II). This follows a Collaborative mission in November and a WHO technical support mission in April to develop the M&E component of HSSP II, a draft of which is available on the SharePoint.

DRC: Ministry of Health Approves National Health Plan

The Ministry of Health last month approved the new National Health Strategic Plan (PNDS 2016-2020). Following a series of workshops in April and May, health partners and the ministry will this month finalize and validate a core indicator list to monitor and evaluate the PNDS and identify M&E priority actions. Please visit the SharePoint to view the PNDS.

Ghana Pilots New Cause-of-Death Tool

Ghana is piloting a new tool for collecting cause-of-death information developed by WHO that will be part of the health information software program DHIS2, a core tool for Collaborative activities. The module aims to capture cause-of-death information in a more innovative and efficient way, allowing users to select from a simplified list of most common causes. Ghana intends to roll out the module in 20 regional and teaching hospitals by the end of the year. Other countries, including Rwanda, Tanzania, Zambia, Uganda, Bhutan and Nepal, may follow. For more details, please contact Doris Ma Fat at

The terms of reference of the Health Data Collaborative's working groups can be viewed here.
  • Facility and Community Data working group: blog post on the working group's first meeting last month has been posted on the HDC website. A virtual meeting will be held later this month. For more details, please contact Kathy O'Neill at
  • Digital Health and Interoperability working group meeting June 28-29 in Washington, DC: the group aims to optimize quality and use of information from digital health systems within low- and middle-income countries and increase efficiencies of investments in such systems. For more details, please contact Susan Higman at
  • Civil Society working group meeting / African Regional Health and Accountability Dialogue in late July (location tbc): this group aims to 1) improve data access and data use to empower policy dialogue and 2) support civil society-led actions to hold both countries and Collaborative partners accountable. For more details, please contact Lola Dare at
  • Workshop on development and implementation of national identifiers in countries July 6-8 in Geneva, organized by UNAIDS and WHO: countries that have recently developed unique identifier systems for monitoring patients will share their experiences and help develop guidelines for other countries. The meeting is not HIV-specific and will incorporate examples from multiple global regions. Unique identifiers will allow countries to strengthen their programme and disease surveillance data as well as vital registration systems. For more details, please contact Kim Marsh at
  • Stakeholder meeting hosted by UN Foundation May 12 in Washington, DC: About 30 participants from NGOs, UN and other agencies and advocacy groups attended an informal stakeholder discussion hosted by UN Foundation to raise the profile of the Health Data Collaborative and invite participation in the working groups. More stakeholder meetings may follow. Please contact Brooke Cutler at for more details.
  • World Health Assembly May 23-28 in Geneva: a resolution on “Health in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development" was passed, requesting the Director-General “to support Member States in strengthening national statistical capacity at all levels, in particular in developing countries, in order to ensure high quality, accessible, timely, reliable, and disaggregated health data including through, where appropriate, the Health Data Collaborative.” This year's World Health Statistics report and data visualizations, published by WHO last month, present currently available data on the health-related Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Health Data Collaborative briefing document that can be shared with country counterparts of partner organizations and other stakeholders has been uploaded to the SharePoint.
  • The Health Data Collaborative website: please contact communications officer Maki Kitamura at for any content suggestions/submissions (including blog posts).

June 23-24 DHIS2/HISP partner meeting (Oslo, Norway)
June 22-23 UHC 2030 Consultation: Building a Partnership to Strengthen Health Systems (Geneva, Switzerland)
June 28-29 HDC Digital Health and Interoperability working group meeting (Washington, DC)
Late June HDC Facility and Community Data working group virtual meeting (dial-in)
July 6-8 Workshop on Facilitating Development and Implementation of National Identifiers in Countries (Geneva, Switzerland)
Late July HDC Civil Society working group meeting (location tbc)
Late July Kenya HDC data analytics workshop (Nairobi, Kenya)
July 18-20 High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (New York)

Best wishes,
The Health Data Collaborative communications team

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