Data Demand and Use

Quality data is fundamental to health systems and their programs across the board from HIV, to family planning (FP), ending preventable child and maternal death (EPCMD), malaria, reproductive health, and all areas of care that ensure public health.

Quality data is fundamental to health systems and their programs across the board from HIV, to family planning, preventing child and maternal deaths, malaria, reproductive health, and all areas of care that ensure public health. Use of data helps health programs target services to areas and populations of high need, thus making the most of scarce resources.

Data-informed programs are critical to reach the targets laid out by governments, donors, and the global community at large. As MEASURE Evaluation works to improve health information systems (HIS) capable of capturing and archiving quality data, it is just as important that we work to ensure that decision makers want to use the data and are equipped with skills to do so.

MEASURE Evaluation’s data demand and use (DDU) strategy begins with a conceptual framework that articulates the specific interventions that improve the demand for and use of data from health information systems (HIS). The framework shows a virtuous cycle in which improved data collection, analysis, availability, interpretation, and use continuously generate more demand for and sustained use of data, which leads to improved accountability and improved health decision making. An accompanying logic model supports the conceptual framework and describes the inputs, processes, outputs, and outcomes involved in improving the use of data in health decision making.

Eight activities comprise the data use intervention: 1) assess and improve the data use context; 2) engage data users and data producers; 3) improve data quality; 4) improve data availability; 5) identify information needs; 6) build capacity in data use core competencies; 7) strengthen the organization’s data demand and use infrastructure; and 8) monitor, evaluate, and communicate results of data use interventions. These activities, when implemented together, lead to the improvement of data use skills, capacity, and attitudes; the operationalization of data use procedures, policies, and support mechanisms; and the regular demand, analysis, synthesis, review, and use of data and information in program review and planning, advocacy and policy development, and decision-making processes.  A suite of tools, guidance documents and training toolkits support the intervention. 

This work includes:

  • Working with governments, organizations, and other health programs to conduct assessments that identify leverage points for improving data demand and use skills, processes, and organizational supports;
  • Collaborating with governments to build national and subnational data use infrastructure to support data-informed decision making;
  • Building capacity in data analysis, interpretation, synthesis, presentation, and communication;
  • Supporting the identification of data needs and developing data use plans to build sustained use of data over time. 
  • Facilitating the development of information products, either print or electronic, and ensuring the dissemination of and feedback on program progress, gaps, and needs.

MEASURE Evaluation has developed a broad array of core tools to stimulate data demand and use:

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