During the implementation of the second strategic plan, the programmes health information and research made gains, which included the adoption of a regional policy and strategies for health information, development of a platform for health information sharing and management, networking of several health documentation centres and libraries within ECOWAS as well as some research institutions. In addition, WAHO supported the establishment of a regional scientific journal, improvement of research management, training in research and funding of research projects. Despite these achievements, some shortfalls were noted. These include:
- Inconsistent use of the existing platform for health information, delays in the transmission of epidemiological surveillance and routine information, the low capacity of production and timely dissemination of the epidemiological profiles (health bulletins and directories);
- Lack of research policies and strategies in some countries, weak capacity of ethics committees and research institutions, inadequate research financing, low utilisation of research results and weak coordination of research activities;
- Absence of documentation management policy, and lack qualified human resources.
The inadequate production and managment of health information, of research and documentation hinder planning and decision making.
Improve the production, dissemination and utilization of health information and research within the ECOWAS region.
Quality information on health is available, easily accessible and utilized in planning and decision making throughout the ECOWAS region.
- Health Information
- Health research
- Strengthen production of health information.
- Promote the dissemination, sharing and utilisation of health information.
- Strengthen the research capacities of the countries
- Development of strategic documents for health information and research
- Strengthening the capacities of National Health Information Systems, National Research Systems and Documentation Services
- Development of mechanisms for regular dissemination and utilization of knowledge, evidence and information in health.
- Policies, legislation and strategic plans (health information, research and documentation) developed
- Capacities of countries and WAHO in health information, research and documentation strengthened,
- Regional platform in health information functional and utilised.