Data Quality Audits and Training in Mozambique
MEASURE Evaluation has conducted eight Data Quality Audits (DQAs) among health organizations in Mozambique since 2011; and has provided training in Routine Data Quality Assessments (RDQAs) to 16 organizations, enabling them to perform their own assessments on a continuing basis.
DQAs assess whether an audited organization’s data collection is accurate, allowing the audited organization to identify problems and strengthen its data processes accordingly. Organizations can also use the DQA methodology to better collect, request, and verify their own data. The tool itself consists of protocols, processes, and templates that detail how to select the organization’s indicators’ data that will be reviewed, notify an organization that an audit of its data will be carried out, and identify potential risks and gaps in an organization’s monitoring and evaluation system.
In contrast to a DQA that is conducted at one time by an outside partner, RDQA tools are used by an organization itself, to continually monitor data quality. RDQAs are essentially shorter versions of DQAs. Organizations trained in RDQAs include the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF) and the Strengthening Communities through Integrated Programming (SCIP) project led by Pathfinder International in Nampula province, and World Vision in Zambezia province. EGPAF is using the DQA methodology to verify, manage, and report data at national, intermediate, and site levels. The SCIP project has conducted its own pilot audit and RDQA visits in three districts, and a second round of visits started in July. Results from the first set of visits also led to data quality improvements for the project.
Sergio Lins, a senior M&E advisor with MEASURE Evaluation, says organizations have been eager to understand and use the data quality tools. “People come back (after using the tools) and are excited,” says Lins, who has co-led the DQAs and RDQA training. “The methodology is really exciting and gives you such easy outputs that, if you use them, it is very easy to interpret the results.”
RDQA training typically takes two or three days. While the Mozambique training has focused on HIV data, Lins says the tools can be applied to other health services.