Category Archive for "Health Information and Management Systems"

Establishment of evidence base for national HIV/AIDS program by strengthening of HIV/AIDS surveillance system in the country

The project was funded by the Global Fund and implemented by the Curatio International Foundation (CIF) in partnership with Georgian Infectious diseases, AIDS and Clinical Immunology Research Center, Public Union “Bemoni,” and association “Tanadgoma.” The project took place from February, 2008 to December 2010.

The aim of the project was to reform HIV/AIDS surveillance system in the country. The project encompassed 3 basic components, each of them embracing series of activities.

In the framework of the first (1) component of the project, Improvement of the routine HIV/AIDS Surveillance system, the HIV/AIDS surveillance system was assessed, which later allowed to develop the HIV/AIDS national surveillance plan. Qualitative and quantitative research methodology, as well as literature review have been applied for exploring international approaches and requirements for the HIV surveillance system, priorities of national policy, and legal environment; assessing information flows, technical capacities and human resources of health care facilities, public health centers, and laboratories/blood stations; and analyzing skills and drawbacks of professional staff in regards to HIV/AIDS surveillance.

Exhaustive assessment and analysis of HIV/AIDS surveillance system led to the development of the National HIV/AIDS surveillance Plan. The document incorporates clear, comprehensive, and operationally viable information serves as a guideline for policy implementation and as an instrument for advocating and mobilizing adequate financial and technical resources. It increases understanding of key concepts and models of the HIV/AIDS surveillance system and suggests ways for effective labor division among various participants and responsible parties. The National HIV/AIDS Surveillance Plan provides an opportunity to better understand financial implications of strategy alternatives and choices to recognize financial requirements and effectively mobilize resources to support sustainability of the HIV/AIDS Surveillance System.

Collaboration of the National HIV/AIDS Routine Surveillance Guidelines was the step following the elaboration of National HIV/AIDS Surveillance Plan, clarifying standard operational procedures for routine surveillance related to and without voluntary consulting and testing (VCT), consultation before and after blood capture, and transportation rules for HIV testing. HIV/AIDS Routine surveillance guideline was endorsed by the Decree of the Minister of Labor, Health and Social Affairs #217/o on 23, July 2010.

Along with endorsing guidelines, the trainings on routine HIV/AIDS surveillance requirements, registration/notification/reporting procedures were delivered to health care specialists throughout the country.

Based on the National HIV/AIDS Surveillance Plan the electronic data base for HIV/AIDS surveillance system was developed. Electronic surveillance system collects case-based data on every tested individual by epidemiological groups. The data allows and software automatically calculates all routine surveillance indicators and produces different types of analytical reports.
The second (2) component of the project foresaw elaboration of the sentinel HIV/AIDS Surveillance guidelines including registration, notification, reporting forms and standard operation procedures. Collection of data through sentinel surveillance would make it possible to provide evidence-grounded HIV/AIDS statistics and strengthen HIV/AIDS surveillance in Georgia.

The third (3) component focused on carrying out behavior surveillance survey with biomarker component among the IDUs, CSWs, Prisoners and MSM and development of standard guidelines for BSS, including standard methodology, standard tools/questioners for data collection, and standard framework for data analysis.

Newly designed HIV/AIDS surveillance system gathers information from different sources: routine surveillance, sentinel surveillance and BSS.

Follow the links to view:
Bio-Behavioral Surveillance Surveys
National HIV/AIDS Surveillance Plan (Eng.version)
National HIV/AIDS Surveillance Plan (Geo.version)
HIV/AIDS Surveillance Assessment Report (Eng.version)
HIV/AIDS Surveillance Assessment Report (Geo.version)

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Winner of the Fellowship Program 2011 Revealed

In May, 2011 the winner of the CIF fellowship program was revealed. According to the decision of the experts committee the fellowship will be granted to Maia Khutsishvili, Master program student of the Tbilisi State Medical University.

Over more than 15 years, Maia has been exposed to different aspects of healthcare field. From early nineties she has been working as a Medical Doctor (Pediatrician) in the leading hospitals of Georgia. In 2009 she joined one of the largest pharmaceutical companies Aversi in the capacity of Medical Representative.

Maia’s academic background includes master level degree from the Tbilisi State Medical University with the specialization of Pediatrician (completed in 1993). She expects her Master’s degree in Public Health Management by the middle of summer 2011.

Aside from clinical experience, Maia has a strong knowledge of specifics of Public Health Management related issues. In 2008-2009 she passed basic program for the managers at Business School of European School of Management. Maia plans to exercise her power in public health management and contribute to development of this field in Georgia.

“Curatio International Foundation has long been the the organization I would like to cooperate with. After completing Master’s program I plan to focus on issues that are embraced in public health management, such as HIV/Aids, Tuberculosis, Drug Addiction etc. These are topics that are widely covered by studies provided by CIF. Becoming the winner of the program is very important for me not only in terms of getting financial award and increasing motivation but also it poses a golden opportunity to get exposed to wonderful experience of Foundation’s experts and listen to their recommendations while working on the research projects in the future”- says Maia.

CIF has been running the Fellowship Program since 2009. Participants are being selected through an open and merit-based competition. The grant worth around of 250 GEL monthly (over ten academic months) is given to ONE student of the Master Program of Public Health Management or Business Administration with the focus on Public Health Management.

For further information please visit the fellowships page.

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HIV/AIDS Surveillance Plan, 2010

The National HIV/AIDS Surveillance Plan in Georgia was developed by the national working group in the frame of the project funded by The Global Fund- “Establishment of evidence-base for national HIV/AIDS program by strengthening the HIV/AIDS surveillance system in the country”.

Download the document here.





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Georgia Immunization MIS and Disease Surveillance Reforms: Achievements, Lessons Learned and Future Directions

From 2001 to 2006, the government of Georgia and the Partners for Health Reformplus (PHRplus) project collaborated to strengthen two components of the Georgia Health Information System (HIS): the immunization management information system (MIS) and infectious disease surveillance system (IDS). The work was funded by USAID/Caucasus and coordinated by a multidisciplinary expert group of stakeholders. Participating expert group members came from the Ministry of Labor, Health and Social Affairs, the Department of Public Health, the National Center for Disease Control and Medical Statistics, local Centers of Public Health (CPH), and several international donors (USAID, UNICEF, and the World Health Organization). Implementation was the responsibility of the Georgian nongovernmental organization Curatio International Foundation, subcontracted by PHRplus. View the document.

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Strategic Plan for the Development of Health Information Systems in Georgia

The purpose this document is to outline a strategy for the development of a Health Information System (HIS) in Georgia. The strategy is expected to be used by in-country stakeholders and international development partners to strengthen in a logical and practical way the Health Information Systems (HIS) bringing it up to international standards. If successful the HIS will contribute to evidence-based decision making in health policy area.

The current work on the development of the strategic plan to strengthen HIS has been carried out within the framework of a grant made to Georgia by Health Metrics Network (HMN), which is a global partnership whose mission is to champion and facilitate better health information at country, regional, and global levels.

Curatio International Foundation, a non-for-profit institution with on-ground experience in research and policy advice has been awarded the Grant to assist the Government and non-government stakeholders in the HIS development strategy design. View the document.

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Strengthening Surveillance, IEC and Procurement Planning to Address Avian Influenza in Georgia

In May 2006, the USAID/Caucasus Mission awarded PATH $400,000 to strengthen surveillance, information, education, communication (IEC) activities, and procurement planning to address avian influenza (AI) in Georgia. As specified in the proposal, PATH has established a partnership with a Georgian nongovernmental organization, Curatio International Foundation (CIF), to implement this activity. View the document.

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Statement for the Media-The Study on Injected Drug Users Completed

Only 1/4 of Intravenous Drug Users are getting tested for HIV, putting their wife’s and girlfriends and the rest of the Georgian population at risk for a widening epidemic

Curatio International Foundation, a Georgian think tank, says “motivating IDUS to get tested is the key to prevention.”

According to a recent study by Curatio International Foundation and Public Union Bemoni, the Injecting Drug Users (IDUs) can put their regular sex partners at risk of HIV infection by having unprotected sex with them.

The study, which was conducted in 2009 in five different locations in Georgia (Tbilisi, Batumi, Zugdidi, Telavi and Gori) found that only 25% of intravenous drug users have been ever tested for HIV through their lifetime -even though the testing is free and available in their communities.

The IDUs especially in Tbilisi are well educated and half are married. The majority of them started drug injection in their late teens. The most frequently injected drug by Tbilisi IDUs is subutex, while Batumi IDUs favor heroin.

The IDUs are quite knowledgeable on HIV transmission routes, however they still commit behaviors that pose risk to their sexual or needle partners.

About half of married IDUs have occasional sex partners and every second of them did not use condoms with such partners. This is particularly unconscionable because in most of cases IDUs do not use condoms with their wives, girlfriends.

Highest HIV rates and risky behavior were found among Batumi IDUs compared to other cities.

“Low uptake of testing services indicates that a large proportion of IDUs is unaware of their HIV status, which leads to high risk behaviors,” says Ketevan Goguadze, project manager, “Motivating IDUs to get tested is the most effective way to prevent spread this infection.”

The study was undertaken in 2009 under the Global Fund supported project implemented by Curatio International Foundation, a local think tank working on the health care issues, and its partner organizations.

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National and subnational HIV/AIDS coordination: are global health initiatives closing the gap between intent and practice?

The research article prepared by the international experts and representatives of Curatio International Foundation was published in the international journal Globalization and Health web site. The article is available at US National Library of Medicine as well.

The paper identifies residual national and subnational obstacles to effective coordination and optimal use of funds by focal GHIs, which these GHIs, other donors and country partners need to collectively address.

Follow the link to view the abstract and the full version of the article.

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Representatives of CIF Visit 2010 Global Health Information Forum

On January 28-30, Ms. Keti Goguadze and Ms. Ivdity Chikovani, Project Managers at Curatio International Foundation presented Spot lights of Georgia Health Information System Strengthening at 2010 Global Health Information Forum in Bangkok, Thailand.

The Global Health Information Forum, hosted by Health Metrics Network (HMN) and the Prince Mahidol Award Conference, with the support of the World Health Organization, the World Bank, the Rockefeller Foundation and other partners brought together a range of experts, governments, donor agencies and organizations with a shared interest in Health Information System (HIS) improvement, to renew energy and commitment to investing in and building the capacities of health information systems.Follow the links to obtain further information on Global Health Information Forum 2010 and HMN or view the poster.

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CoReform Project and the Ministry of Health Mark the Completion of the First Stage of Trainings on ICPC2 Application

Today, July 24th the CIF under the auspices of the USAID funded CoReform project hosted the award ceremony dedicated to the completion of the first stage of the training course on Classifications for Hospital, Ambulatory and Laboratory interventions.

30 Master Trainers from Primary Health Care Centers upon the training completion were honored to be awarded with special certificates in International Classification for Primary Care (ICPC 2) by Alexander Kvitashvili, the Minister of Labor, Health, and Social Affairs.

Today’s closing event was preceded by series of trainings launched in May and aimed at delivering knowledge upon application of International Classification for Primary Care (ICPC 2) for ambulatory services. During 3 months period over 130 employees from 28 health care centers have been trained.

The Minister in his greeting speech congratulated participants with completion of the course mentioning that “Continuous education is necessary for any specialist to grow professionally”. He also expressed his gratitude towards USAID for funding projects thus beneficial for Georgian community. “The recent visit of the US Vice President Joe Biden gave us the clear signal that US government stands with Georgia in undertaking any effort addressing political, economic or social issues. USAID on the behalf of the US government shows its support to development of these fields and this is very important for us. Initiatives it funds will lead to welfare of our citizens”, state the Minister. 

Julian Simidjiyski, the Chief of Party of CoReform project from ABT Associates thanked the Minister for honoring the event and stressed the contribution of trainers. “Without their dedication this event would not have happened”, he said.

George Khechinashvili, Program Management Specialist of the Office of Health and Social Development of the USAID Caucasus in his speech put special emphasis on the importance of the International Classifications for Medical Interventions for the country’s health sector and expressed his deep gratitude to the CoReform project, CIF and project experts in doing such an amazing job.

As mentioned by the participants the training has turned out to be exceptionally beneficial for them in terms of content and efficient manner of delivering the information.

“It is almost 10-11 years we have been participating in trainings provided in the field of health care, although none of the trainings have been as beneficial as this one. I deemed how we have been working without ICPC until today, how we managed to set priorities and how the process of reporting worked. Adoption of this system is extremely important for improving the performance of providers as well as their services”, said Rusudan Chitaishvili, on behalf of ALDAGI BCI Assistance.

Trainings are still underway and by the end of September 40 health care professionals will be trained additionally. This time it will focus on NOMESCO Classification for Surgical Procedures (NCSP).

Noteworthy, the Ministry has obtained the license for application of the ICPC 2 in Georgia. Currently the Ministry is proceeding with issuing the normative decree to make all classifications official national classifications.

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