Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
Type of Leprosy Treatment Available
This information is useful to quantify the extent of MDT coverage at various geographic levels.
Where can the computerized mapping be performed?
LEP believes that most of the computerized mapping could be done at the national level if both the necessary facilities and trained personnel are available. LEP is willing to support any local initiative (either by Government or NGOs) to carry out these mapping procedures, including additional training in the use of GIS software and GPS operation where considered necessary.
The GIS software currently being considered for this purpose is MapInfo, which can read Lotus 123, Excel spreadsheet files, dBase and FoxBASE database files and several others.
Submission of Health Facility Data to LEP
LEP would like to establish the GIS system in all endemic countries as soon as possible. The first step will be for National Programme Managers to compile a list of all health facilities in their respective countries, showing their location and what type of treatment is available for leprosy (if any). If readily available, the geographic coordinates for the health facilities should also be included in the list.
One obvious advantage that a computerized list has over a paper based reporting system is the ease with which data can be updated, revised and analysed. Another is the speed at which it can be transmitted via E-mail or the Internet (where these facilities exist at the national level), and yet still retain its original format.. National Programme Managers are therefore strongly encouraged to compile the list on a computer. This computerized list should be sent to LEP by the end of March 1996 at the latest. Also, LEP would like to be informed whether the geographical coordinates for the country=s health facilities (or villages) are available or not. Based on this feedback, LEP will keep the National Programme Manager informed about the next step to take in the process.