Data Quality Audit Tool – Guidelines for Implementation

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Author(s): Hardee K

Year: 2008

Data Quality Audit Tool – Guidelines for Implementation Abstract:

National programs and donor-funded projects are working towards achieving ambitious goals related to the fight against diseases such as Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), Tuberculosis (TB), and Malaria. Measuring the success and improving the management of these initiatives is predicated on strong monitoring and evaluation (M&E) systems that produce quality data related to program implementation.

In the spirit of the “Three Ones,” the “Stop TB Strategy,” and the “RBM Global Strategic Plan,” a number of multilateral and bilateral organizations have collaborated to jointly develop a Data Quality Assessment (DQA) Tool. The objective of this harmonized initiative is to provide a common approach for assessing and improving overall data quality. A single tool helps to ensure that standards are harmonized and allows for joint implementation between partners and with National Programs.

The DQA Tool focuses exclusively on (1) verifying the quality of reported data, and (2) assessing the underlying data management and reporting systems for standard program-level output indicators. The DQA Tool is not intended to assess the entire M&E system of a country’s response to HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, or Malaria. In the context of HIV/AIDS, the DQA Tool relates to component 10 (i.e., supportive supervision and data auditing) of the “Organizing Framework for a Functional National HIV M&E System.1” Two versions of the DQA Tool have been developed: (1) the “Data Quality Audit Tool” which provides guidelines to be used by an external audit team to assess a program/project’s ability to report quality data; and (2) the “Routine Data Quality Assessment Tool” (RDQA) which is a simplified version of the DQA Tool for auditing that allows programs and projects to assess the quality of their data and strengthen their data management and reporting systems.

The objectives of the DQA Tool for auditing are to:

  • Verify the quality of reported data for key indicators at selected sites; and
  • Assess the ability of data management systems to collect and report quality data.

In addition, for the programs/projects being audited, the findings of the DQA can also be very useful for strengthening their data management and reporting systems.

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