Chapter 1. Recommendations for National HIS Implementations

Table of Contents

1.1. Database development
1.2. Import and mapping of existing databases
1.3. Securing necessary resources for the implementation
1.4. Integration of parallel systems
1.5. Setup of a reliable online national server
1.6. Pilot phase
1.7. Roll out
1.8. Training
1.9. Decentralization of data capture and management
1.10. Review and extension

The following text gives a brief overview of some of the key aspects of HIS implementations learned by HISP from numerous missions in developing countries. The various aspects can be used as input for planning of new implementation efforts or evaluation of ongoing processes.

1.1. Database development

When developing a new database a natural start is to define the data elements for which to capture data and to design the data entry forms. The data elements are the core building blocks of the database and must be reasonable stable before moving on. The next step could be to define validation rules based on the mentioned data elements to be able to better ensure the correctness of the data being captured.

The other core component of the database is the organisational hierarchy which should be identified and set up in the initial phase. The health facilities are generally the source of the data and the organisational hierarchy is locating the facilities in both the geographical and in the administrative dimension. In most countries there is no strictly defined and continuously updated “master registry” for health facilities, hence this process needs to involve the different stakeholders including the district level as they will be the ones who have best knowledge about the situation.