Anambra State Government in partnership with EU/WHO organised a 2-Day Data Consultative Committee meeting to enhance quality delivery and record-keeping.
The meeting took place at the Cihcotel Hotels, Awka from July 8 to July 9.Anambra Commissioner for Health, Dr Vincent Okpala said the partnership with EU/WHO was geared toward improving healthcare through use of accurate data collections.
Dr Okpala emphasised the importance of accurate data collections and its relevance in the healthcare sector.He noted that the ministry could not administratively function properly without accurate and qualitative data as things done in the ministry would depend on data.At the basic level, patient-based side, what we do is informed by data as well as in making simple clinical diagnosis.
We look at different components leading to ability to make decisions based on people’s previous experiences and data collected.So, data drives line and data drives changes in the health ministry.If, for instance in a Local Government Area (LGA) we have an increased incidence of diarrhea diseases, if we do not collect data effectively, we won’t understand what is going on in LG.We won’t understand when there is a spike and that spike informs of the opinion whether there is a local epidemic or pandemic ongoing.’’
Dr Okpala, while expressing joy, said the system was structured in such a way that data would be collected appropriately in both private and public hospitals.
What we are doing here is to get everybody together, the private and public health facilities.We come together to discuss, in order to see how we can seamlessly collect, collate and transmit data as well as analyse them, using it to function effectively and to plan.When you do that, it is one of the components of strong health system.’’
He commended the EU/WHO and other partners’ support in strengthening the state health system and the objectives of achieving universal health coverage.
Earlier, Mrs Edith Nwachukwu, Head of Department (HOD), Planning Research and Statistics, said that the meeting was quarterly with support from EU/WHO under the health system strengthening project in the state.
Mrs Nwachukwu explained that the committees were made up of private sector representatives, primary health centre coordinators from Local Government Areas (LGAs), Monitoring and Evaluation officers as custodians of data at the LGA levels.Though we are looking at data issues in the state and to find out where we are doing it right, where we are not doing it right.So, we are trying to look at issues around data starting from data quality, consistency and timely reporting in data management generally.Timely and reporting rightly will help decision makers to make a proper planning and decision.It will help the state to have one database and not a parallel reporting, so this will help us to have one reporting format as directed by the Federal Ministry of Health.’’The HOD noted that the essence of the meeting was to proffer solutions as well as reach resolutions that would be forwarded to the state for action.