Philippine Red Cross uses ODK for its community health activities

July 25th, 2014 by Waylon Brunette

Red Cross staff and volunteer trainee facilitators held a workshop in Cebu City for community-based health and first aid (CBHFA) to promote health in vulnerable communities. Part of the workshop was practicing mobile data collection methods using the Open Data Kit Collect. Read more about the workshop on the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies website story.

ODK opens door to improved survey data for agriculture

July 7th, 2014 by Waylon Brunette

An agrilinks post discusses how ODK can be leveraged for M&E as part of USAID's Feed the Future program.

"The project’s work with ODK is just one example of USAID’s public commitment to develop and scale innovation through strategic partnerships with the private sector. Within USAID Forward, smarter data use is placed center stage in the Agency’s efforts to increase transparency, collaboration, and impact."

...

"Using the ODK development interface, the project was able to develop a core template for the data collection survey that was then modified based on the specific data collection needs and regional differences of each country. Also, in-country teams were able to provide feedback gathered from training sessions and testing to identify modifications to the core template. Taking advantage of the integrated nature of the ODK Collect survey tool and ODK Aggregate server, surveys could be quickly modified, tested, and released for further testing or data collection. This rapid prototyping method could be particularly valuable for those conducting surveys on a similarly large scale."

Read the full post here.

AMPATH Reaches One Millionth Person

May 27th, 2014 by Yaw Anokwa

Megan J. Miller from AMPATH wrote in to highlight an incredible milestone. AMPATH's ODK-powered home-based HIV/AIDS counseling and testing program in Western Kenya has reached over a million people.

In the village of Soy, Uasin Gishu County, Kenya, William Tenai, and his wife Jane anxiously awaited a group of visitors from Eldoret. The visitors included AMPATH leaders and community health workers who would be testing Mr. and Mrs. Tenai for HIV. The AMPATH leaders came along on this home-based testing visit because Mr. and Mrs. Tenai would soon become the one-millionth person and one-millionth-and-one person respectively to be reached since the inception of the AMPATH perpetual home-based counseling and testing program (pHCT).

“I was nervous at first to learn my HIV status,” said Mrs. Tenai. “Now I know my HIV status is negative and also how to stay safe thanks to the health talk by the AMPATH counselor.”

“We will not win the AIDS battle by waiting for sick people to come to our clinics, but only by bringing HIV testing to people’s homes in Africa,” said Dr. Sylvester N. Kimaiyo, Chief Executive Officer, AMPATH. “We are grateful to all our partners — especially the Kenyan Government, USAID, and our lead private sector partner, the AbbVie Foundation — who have made this possible through their support.”

A celebration event was also held in the Soy village by Dr. Kimaiyo, who met the local administration led by the local area chief, Ben Chulele and elder, Joram Mwangi.

ampath-enumerator

In 2009, AMPATH began deploying health workers out into the rural villages and communities. Armed with a bag of testing and counseling supplies and a smartphone with a GPS and AMPATH’s electronic medical record system, the community health workers travel by foot door-to-door assuring every person over the age of 13 and every at-risk child is tested for HIV. AMPATH’s structure to end the HIV pandemic is based on the FLTR model: to find (F) every HIV-infected person, link (L) that person to care, treat (T) the individual, and retain (R) them in care.

"The ability to collect data in electronic form and integrate it with the rest of the system is the most important tool we have to be able to successfully implement the pHCT program," said Martin Were, Chief Medical Information Officer for the AMPATH Consortium. "The Open Data Kit has been instrumental in this data collection."

In addition to reaching HIV-positive people and connecting them with necessary services, the AMPATH program is also helping those who test negative by making them aware of their status and providing information and support so they remain HIV-free. While historic numbers of patients are receiving modern antiretroviral treatment, the incidence of new infections and prevalence rates remain stubbornly high in Kenya.

The pHCT campaign has brought not only HIV testing to hundreds of thousands of people’s homes, but also TB screening, malaria bed nets, deworming medication, orphan and vulnerable children identification, nutrition assessments and the promise of care and treatment if a person is found to be positive. In a pilot area of 500,000 people, counselors are also screening for hypertension and diabetes through blood pressure and blood sugar testing. This approach of bundling services has reduced the stigma of these home visits as well as providing access to care to people in need. Significantly, AMPATH’s pHCT teams were welcomed into the majority of homes and more than 95% of those eligible agreed to be tested.

The goal of the pHCT program is to test everyone in the 2-million person catchment area. With the recent milestone, AMPATH is half-way there.