Which interventions are effective in stimulating health sector data use? This is a question we've been asking for quite some time as we gear up the Kuunika Project: Data for Action in Malawi. Turns out, there's not a great deal of evidence on data use and incentives, especially related to increasing access to information, capacity for analysis, and data-driven decisions.
With a global push towards an information revolution in health, program planners need to create the value proposition for health workers to focus more on data. Frontline workers have to see better use of data as a way to save time and improve quality of care. Health managers need to see how applying routine data can increase program output and cost-effectiveness of limited budgets. Choosing interventions for promoting data use must be aligned to both personal and program incentives if they are to be effective, as well as tailored to the target groups and context.
In the lead up to the project design in Malawi, we completed a rapid lit review to catalogue evidence available on data use and incentive programs. Realizing that others may be grappling with the same question, we assembled this review into a database and dashboard for easy access and navigation. This list is by no means exhaustive, but we are hoping this will be a good start and help promote collaboration and sharing of ideas for those working in health data.
We hope this tool can be expanded and look to you to fill in any observed gaps. Eventually, this may prove to be a useful platform for coordinating projects within countries and regions, sharing lessons learned, and discussing common challenges. Please let us know what you think in the comments section. If you have any requested additions to the evidence base or feedback on the design, please contact us.
Special thanks to Roberta Makoko, Megan Wolfe, and Sara Walker for their contribution to the lit review and our own Andrea Fletcher for building such a sleek dashboard.