Data Collect in the DRC: Patient feedback & monitoring socio-economic status

Health RBF programs typically evaluate patient satisfaction quarterly to verify the information declared by health centers about the services offered. Every quarter, a sampling of patients who visit the health facility are interviewed usually by Community-Based Organizations (CBO). Once data has been collected, a “community satisfaction score” is calculated for each provider, which impacts the payment/bonus allocated to that provider. In most countries, this process is paper-based.

Data Collect in Benin: near real-time service availability and readiness data

In early 2016, Benin’s Ministry of Health scaled up its Results-Based Financing (RBF) system. This move has ensured that all health care providers (all public, most faith-based, some private) are surveyed quarterly to externally assess service availability and quality of care. To aid Benin’s government, Bluesquare has been providing strategic support to their RBF data system.

Why you probably shouldn’t host yourself

When delivering software to our customers or helping them setup a DHIS2 for their National Health Information System (NHIS), we always end up with the same question: where should to host the system? While Web Applications can be developed using various languages and technologies, they are common enough to require at minimum a database (to host the data), a web server (to run the code and pages that make the application), and possibly a few other services (e.g. a mail server).

We’re delighted to welcome our new CTO, Martin Van Aken!

Martin learned to program as a kid on his Commodore 64, but turned to economics for his studies before starting a career as a teacher. He then shifted to software development, which he has been doing for the past 15 years, experiencing most of the roles in the sector: programmer, architect, customer contact, team leader, technical coach, startup founder and technical mentor.

Going mobile: taking data collection to the next level

Each year we see the use of mobile devices become more widespread, including in developing countries, where mobile technology was previously less accessible. Furthermore, with growing use has come an increased understanding of technology. This has clearly helped projects that use mobile data collection. While this underlines the potential power of mobile data collection, what key values does it bring?

Reliable routine health system data — at last? The added value of an integrated DHIS2 and RBF data system

A large number of countries in which we work have shifted their HMIS (health management information system) onto DHIS2 — a popular open source software tool developed by the University of Oslo. Often, the data platform also becomes the country’s de-facto health system data warehouse.

Using ODK for RBF structural quality checklists in Zimbabwe

Over the last decades, the health system in Zimbabwe has been confronted with a double crisis: an economic collapse and the AIDS pandemic. This destabilized the health system at its core. And overall life expectancy dropped from 61 years old in the 1990s to 48 years old in 2005, before climbing back up to 58 years old in 2012.

Drones, balloons, satellites…What’s the next big thing in global health?

While leading a course at the Tropical Institute of Antwerp, I asked participants (mostly mid-career health professionals from emerging economies) when they thought Internet would be available in the most remote parts of their country. Their median estimate was 2035.