Health Information Programme

From the production of primary data to the elaboration of complete health situation analysis, the generation of strategic health information is a basic principle of public health, on which to base the identification of needs, inequalities and priorities in health, and the monitoring of actions and policies to address them.

The Health Information and Analysis Unit coordinate AHO’s efforts to collect, process, manage, analyse, and disseminate health data and statistics from African countries and technical areas. It contributes to the strengthening of health information through technical cooperation in the following areas.


Strengthening Health Information Systems

AHO’s main objective in the area of information systems is to improve health information for decision-making and program planning.  In recent years, the organization has led an initiative to develop and maintain a regional plan for strengthening health information systems and has joined other initiatives in assisting countries in the production of improved health statistics.

The Plan for the Strengthening Vital and Health Statistics in Africa incorporates the conceptual framework of the Health Metrics Network and the dynamics of the relationships between determining factors and their impact as outlined in the Performance of Routine Information System Management (PRISM) Framework; and adopts its own vision regarding information production processes.

The primary objectives of this joint effort have been to use and promote standardized frameworks, methodologies, and instruments to monitor HIS operations; to identify, document, and disseminate successful experiences, key processes, and lessons learned relating to assessment processes; and to design strategic plans to strengthen HIS in selected countries.

Through the Plan of Action for Strengthening Vital and Health Statistics, AHO participates in processes put in place to improve these statistics in African countries. The technical cooperation provided covers topics such as quality and coverage of statistics, horizontal cooperation between countries and coordination among international agencies and other protagonists working to strengthen health information systems in Africa.

Its main objective is to strengthen health information systems and the use and dissemination of information. Its main purpose is to articulate regional efforts for the continuous improvement of health information systems among the network participants.

The purpose is data collection, processing, analysis, and generation of evidence for decision-making in health.

AHO’s technical cooperation in the area of information systems includes the development and design of technology and applications that enable countries to initiate or strengthen health surveillance and improve health and vital statistics.

One example is a fully customisable, Web application designed to manage and increase public health surveillance activities. With the application, institutions throughout a national surveillance system are able, among other things, to record individual and grouped surveillance data including laboratory results, create event profiles using GIS analysis, and set up alerts based on international standards.