ANTANANARIVO – As part of their commitment to help improve delivery of health services in Madagascar, the American people through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) yesterday donated equipment that helps the Ministry of Public Health set up a web-based health information system to track data on COVID-19 vaccinations. The hardware will operate a system known as the District Health Information Software (DHIS2) as well as an additional new application called the Covax Tracker that provides officials with the Ministry’s Expanded Immunization Program (DPEV) data to monitor the performance of COVID-19 vaccination in real time.
“Having accessible data is essential for effective health monitoring, planning, and strategic decision-making in order to prevent and respond to emergencies and ensure access to quality services,” USAID Acting Mission Director Randy Chester said at a ceremony marking the donation. “The technology will enable health officials to monitor vaccine coverage and the effectiveness of case management for COVID-19 and other health issues.”
The equipment, valued at $14,700 (AR 60.5 million), is provided through the U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) Measure Malaria project and includes eight laptops, eight routers, four external disc drives, and a printer. The new hardware’s capacity provides access to health data in real time via the internet, and allows for in-depth analysis of the data, trends, and geographic comparisons of health indicators.
Since 2020, PMI Measure Malaria has helped Madagascar strengthen access to routine health information system data, including the private health sector, malaria surveillance, monitoring and evaluation, and data quality for use in strategic decision-making. The project operates in 11 countries on four continents to strengthen health information systems.
In collaboration with other USAID projects, Measure Malaria will continue to train Ministry of Public Health specialists in data management and analysis as well as action plan development to improve disease prevention and health management services.
The delivery of this computer equipment is only part of the support USAID has provided to the Ministry of Public Health. The U.S. government works together with the Government of Madagascar like “Mpirahalahy Mianala” to strengthen the national health information system and improve access to quality health services.
The U.S. government is the largest donor to Madagascar’s health sector, allocating more than $440 million since 2015 to fund health activities, including $16 million for the fight against COVID-19.