DHIS2 comes with an advanced solution for fine-grained management of users and user roles. The system is completely flexible in terms of the number and type of users and roles allowed.
A user in the DHIS2 context is a human who is utilizing the software. Each user in DHIS2 has a user account which is identified by a username. A user account allows the user to authenticate to system services and be granted authorization to access them. To log in (authenticate) the user is required to enter a valid combination of username and password. If that combination matches a username and password registered in the database, the user is allowed to enter.
In addition, a user should be given a first name, surname, email and phone number. This information is important to get correct when creating new users since certain functions in DHIS2 relies on sending emails to notify users about important events. It is also useful to be able to communicate to users directly over email and telephone to discuss data management issues or to sort out potential problems with the system.
A user in DHIS2 is associated with an organisation unit. This implies that when creating a new user account that account should be associated to the location where user works. For instance when creating a user account for a district record officer that user account should be linked with the particular district where she works. The link between user account and organisation unit has several implications for the operation of the system:
In the data entry module, a user can only be entering data for the organisation unit she is associated with and the organisation units below that in the hierarchy. For instance, a district records officer will be able to register data for her district and the facilities below that district only.
In the user module, a user can only create new users for the organisation unit she is associated with in addition to the organisation units below that in the hierarchy.
In the reports module, a user can only view reports her organisation units and those below. (This is something we consider to open up to allow for comparison reports.)
A user role in DHIS2 is also associated with a set of user roles. Such user roles are discussed in the following section.