Aggregating and sharing data about health facilities and their activities, infrastructures and personnel to support the decission making process in the Guinean public health systems and ultimately improving availability and quality of care.
Until early 2016 data collection, integration, analysis and visualization of health care data in Guinea were handled by the health care estructures (health posts, health centre, hospitals…) and by several different NGO is spreadsheets and text documents. These documents were produced using different tools, and stored independently by different reporting units (the Prefetoral and Regional Directions of Health, the Ministry of Health, the different NGOs…)
The data collection, analysis and storage processes were largely manual, labor-intensive, time-consuming, and not standardized. Reports were not being analysed for quality nor compared with data from other periods or related data collected by other groups. In addition to this data took days in reach the decission makers, making it hard to take good fast decissions to respond to issues and improve health care quality and coverage.
Guinea Connect was born as an idea in August 2015 as the eHealth Africa team in Guinea was working in a proposal for an Integrated Community Health Post Project for the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation. The main purpose of the proposal, for the Integrated Community Health Posts Pilot, was to refurbish and equip a set of health facilities, and to build capacity by evaluating health care workers, sending a qualified Doctor to train them, and making learning materials available in the long term.
What if we could use this opportunity of working with the lower levels of health care to improve data management using our experience? Could we improve reporting from the base, harmonising indicators and reducing the time data took to reach the decission makers? What if this data could be made available to other partners to support them in their programs? These questions motivated us to start the Guinea Connect Program.
The Central Management Dashboard
The Central Management Dashboard (CMD in the future) lists and maps health facilities and health care workers, as well as information for each of them: their monthly activity reports, details about the facility infrastructure and the personnel working on them, data analytics… It is protected with a password that makes sure that each block of data is only available to the people with legitimate access rights to it.
The Closed User Group
Guinea Connect also includes the management of a ministerial Closed User Group Management. The Closed User Group has two dimensions. On one hand it provides a certain amount of monthly credit to some of its members, and ensures phone calls between member numbers and data access to URL addresses that are part of the program are free. On the other hand it makes sure these devices are not misused. Using a mobile device management tool content of a device can be remotely wiped if it is lost or stolen, and applications are always controlled and up to date through remote installation and blacklisting.
Guinea Connect Beta
In January 2015, eHA launched Guinea Connect as part of the Integrated Community Health Post (ICHH) pilot in the prefecture of Pita. The 8 health posts participating in the ICHH project, the health centre of the subprefecture of Timbi Touni, to which they all reported, were given laptops and ODK forms to enter their Monthly Report of Activities.
Interoperability with other platforms
Guinea Connect is born with a vocation of convergence of data efforts. DHIS2 is the software of choice of the Ministry of Health in Guinea and is being prepared for implementation at the moment. iHRIS is being rolled out as the human resources tool of choice. Our eyes are set on these two tools and we plan to synchronise with them as soon as they are in use.