Innovations in Big Data Strengthen Human Resources for Health in Kenya


April 8, 2014

   

PEPFAR is proud to support innovations in technology that help countries move closer to achieving an AIDS-free generation. The Kenya Health Workforce Information System (KHWIS) is one such innovation, which PEPFAR has support to improve the collection, analysis, and use of robust data to capture the “lifespan” of a health worker – through education, licensing, and continued professional development. This information can then be used to improve policy and funding decisions related to human resources for health, including those needed to support effective and efficient HIV/AIDS service delivery.

Currently, less than one combined doctor, nurse, and midwife exist per 10,000 people in Kenya – far less than the 23 health care workers per 10,000 people minimum threshold established by the World Health Organization. However, thanks to data it collected through the KHWIS, the Government of Kenya was empowered with the information it needed to revise its policies on the healthcare workforce and facilitate a substantial expansion of HIV/AIDS services. The Government of Kenya re-allocated a substantial portion of its funding toward health care workforce salaries, which enabled a ten-fold increase in hiring local nurses at understaffed health facilities. Between 2009 and 2011, 10,500 new health worker posts were created in the country, 7,350 of which were for nurses.

This is just one of many examples of how PEPFAR is supporting technological innovation to drive better health outcomes and stronger health systems in partnership with high-burden countries.


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