About 90 selected Regional, District and Sub-district health information officers in the Upper East Region have been trained in Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) data management and utilization.
The training was to enhance the knowledge and skills of the stakeholders to effectively collect, analyse, manage and utilise IPC data to identify trends and assess the efficacy of interventions to make informed decisions to contribute to enhancing public health and safety through improved Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH).
It brought together district information officers and district directors of Ghana Health Service (GHS) from eight districts, regional WASH focal person of GHS, Regional Coordinating Council WASH focal person and regional information focal person, GHS.
The beneficiary districts include Kassena-Nankana and Builsa Municipals, Kassena-Nankana West, Bongo, Bawku West, Tempane, Garu and Binduri and it was to equip the key health workers with skills to improve WASH in healthcare facilities to contribute to achieving IPC.
Mr Felix Gbevillah, Programmes Officer, WaterAid Ghana, explained that WaterAid Ghana and its partners had implemented the three interventions in the beneficiary districts to improve WASH services in healthcare facilities to contribute to IPC which was essential in ensuring public health and safety.
Mr Gbevillah indicated that through engagements with the various health directorates it was identified that data collection onto the District Health Information Management System (DHIMS), interpretation, management and utilization relative to WASH and IPC was a major challenge and it affected decision making and interventions in such areas.
He said the training was to build the capacity of the health information officers at the regional, district and facility levels to boost their understanding of the data and indicators on the DHIMS to enhance decision making to address data gaps in the database relative to WASH and IPC.
“You need data to back every decision you take and so we think that if we are able to capture this data onto the database, it will allow for quick and informed decision making to improve upon WASH facilities in the healthcare facilities in the various districts.
“So, we hope that the skills they have acquired through the training will go a long way to improve data management at the facility level,” he said.
Mr Odoi Kafui Kofi, a Health Information Officer, Institutional Care Division of the Ghana Health Service, indicated that although there were data management teams at the facility level, it was imperative to strengthen the capacity of such management systems to effectively collect data to meet the required standard.
While thanking WaterAid Ghana and its partners for the gesture to improve upon healthcare, especially in IPC through improved WASH services, he appealed to other organisations to support the healthcare facilities to improve upon service delivery.
The training was organised by WaterAid Ghana, a WASH focused organisation and sponsored by the Enhancing WASH (EnWASH) project funded by USAID, Sexual Health and Reproductive Education (SHARE) project funded by Global Affairs Canada and System Strengthening for Sustainable WASH services (3SWASH) project funded by the Helmsley Charitable Trust, all being implemented by WaterAid Ghana in the region.