Original Research

Disaggregated data to improve child health outcomes

Ann M.E.T. Tshabalala, Myra Taylor
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 8, No 1 | a1221 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v8i1.1221 | © 2016 Ann M.E.T. Tshabalala, Myra Taylor | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 31 May 2016 | Published: 02 December 2016

About the author(s)

Ann M.E.T. Tshabalala, KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health, Amajuba Health District, South Africa
Myra Taylor, School of Nursing and Public Health, Discipline of Public Medicine, University of KwaZulu–Natal, South Africa


Share this article

Bookmark and Share

Abstract

Background: The District Health Information System was developed in South Africa to collect aggregated routine data from public health facilities. In Amajuba District, KwaZulu-Natal, ward-based data collection has been initiated to facilitate improved responsiveness to community health needs and improve health outcomes and patient satisfaction.
Aim: To assess the application of the municipal ward-based health data in the decision-making process to improve child health outcomes.
Setting: The study was conducted in 25 primary health care service sites in Amajuba.
Methods: A cross-sectional mixed methods’ approach was used. The study population comprised operational managers, professional nurses, ward-based outreach team leaders and supervisors. Quantitative data were collected using a semi-structured questionnaire and analysed using descriptive statistics. Qualitative data were collected using focus group discussions and analysed using thematic analysis.
Results: Of the 131 respondents, 83 (67.5%) provided targeted child interventions to a certain or a large extent to improve child health outcomes, but only 74 (57.4%) respondents reported using municipal ward-based health data to a certain or large extent in order to inform their decisions. This discrepancy indicates poor utilisation of local health information for decision making.
Conclusion: The study showed that municipal ward-based health data are not fully utilised for making informed decisions to improve child health outcomes. It is imperative to inculcate a culture of evidence-informed decisions that leads to provision of targeted interventions in order to mitigate the challenge of scarcity of resources and to improve child health outcomes.

Keywords

Health information system; disaggregated data; decision making and National Health Insurance

Metrics

Total abstract views: 2742
Total article views: 3414

 

Crossref Citations

1. Field-testing of primary health-care indicators, India
Devaki Nambiar, Hari Sankar, Jyotsna Negi, Arun Nair, Rajeev Sadanandan
Bulletin of the World Health Organization  vol: 98  issue: 11  first page: 747  year: 2020  
doi: 10.2471/BLT.19.249565