2014 Partners' Forum

30 JUNE - 1 JULY | Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa

Session 2A: Better data for better policy making, programming and accountability

A parallel session on better data collecting kicked off the afternoon line up on the first day of the Partners’ Forum and was billed as the perfect segue to the plenary session on Health: an accountability model for Post-2015. Moderator, Ana Langer, Director of the Maternal Health Task Force and Women’s and Health Initiative at the Harvard School of Public health explained the importance of good data to policy making and its critical role in accountability for all stakeholders.

Presentations reviewed advances made by countries, donors, the research community and international agencies working to strengthen accountability for women’s and children’s health and were accompanied by opening remark from Bernadette Daelmanns, Acting Director and Coordinator, Department of Child and Adolescent Health, WHO intervening on behalf of Dr Flavia Bustreo. She highlighted progress achieved on commitments by countries to the Commission on Information and Accountability referred to new information which shows that countries are welcoming accountability and catalytic funding and it has proven to be effective.

Tan Vuoch Chhen, Secretary of State, Ministry of Health, Cambodia in charge of RMNCH nutrition and gender, reported on progress in Cambodia including the establishment of a set of 11 indicators recommended by the COIA, civil registration and vital statistics which has been in place for several years, and the implementation of a digital registration system at district level.

Clara Menéndez, from ISGlobal spoke about establishing the cause of maternal mortality and that millions of people are born and die outside health facilities and without being registered. Many programmes and policies, she explained are designed and implemented on the grounds of estimations of causes of mortality and morbidity. Less than 3% of the almost 7 million of under 5 deaths have been medically certified. Currently we rely on imperfect indirect methods of cause of death determination: verbal autopsies rely on interpretations of clinicians and are subject to misclassification errors; clinical records. When research is done comparing these methods with the gold standard (autopsy) results showcase that major clinical errors were present in more than half of the cases Most of maternal deaths were caused due to infectious diseases and not obstetric causes. “All human life counts, she said, but the reality is that some count more than others- One of the best ways to deliver and to bridge the equity gap is to improve the cause of death determination”.

Khatia Munguambe, from CISM expanded on the socio-cultural barriers for cause of death determination. Coming up with means to estimate the most important cause of death in developing countries is a challenge. The need to understand social and cultural factors, what is acceptable and who should conduct cause of death determination in a feasible and acceptable way was discussed. Some existing determinants are: fear of body determination, no direct benefits, impossibility to obtain consent from the deceased, young age of the deceased or delays in the funeral. Minimal invasive technics like minimally invasive autopsy (MIA) are an alternative to the existing methods. In this context the acceptability and feasibility of conducting MIA is being assessed currently through a multicentered project that intends to capture a variety of cultural backgrounds (Pakistan, Brazil, Gabon, Mali, Mozambique). It will allow to assess the broad concept of “death”.

The session concluded with a general acknowledgement that at all levels (macro, micro), accountability is a complex process to gather and process the information .

The session was chaired by Ana Langer Director of the Maternal Health Task Force and Women’s and Health Initiave at the Harvard School of Public health, and included remarks by Bernadette Daelmanns, Acting Director and Coordinator, Department of Child and Adolescent Health, WHO, Stephen Kebwe Kebwe , Deputy Minister of Health & Social Welfare, Tanzania, Tan Vuoch Chhen, Secretary of State, Ministry of Health, Cambodia, Clara Menéndez, Director Maternal, Infant and Reproductive Health Initiative at the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal) and Khatia Munguambe, Associate Senior Researcher at Manhiça Health Research Centre (CISM) and Lecturer at Eduardo Mondlane University, Maputo, Mozambique.

  1. About the 2014 Partners’ Forum
  2. The 2014 Partners’ Forum begins: Now it is in our hands
  3. Plenary 1: Healthy women and children at the centre of development
  4. Session 1A: “Fast-track” countries share stories of success
  5. Session 1B: Building a Future Where Children Survive and Thrive
  6. Session 1C: Delivering Immunisation Together: Hitting the MDGs and health goals beyond 2015
  7. Session 1D: Every Mother, Every Newborn: Ensuring Quality of Care at Birth
  8. Plenary 2: Health: A model of Accountability for Post-2015
  9. Session 2A: Better data for better policy making, programming and accountability
  10. Session 2B: The Every Woman Every Child health model of accountability in the post 2015 era
  11. Session 2C: Accountability for RMNCH: The African perspective and prospects
  12. Session 2D: Countdown to 2015: Fulfilling the health agenda for women and children
  13. Session 2E: Addressing the Nutrition needs in a Post-2015 Agenda
  14. Plenary 3: Equity – leave no one behind
  15. Session 3A: Ending Preventable Maternal Mortality
  16. Session 3B: Bridging the Digital Divide: Making Mobile and ICTs a Reality for All
  17. Session 3C: Integrating services for HIV/AIDS and RMNCH to promote equitable access to quality care for women and children
  18. Session 3D: Universal Health Coverage and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights: Common Goals, Shared Challenges
  19. Session 3E: Equitable access to quality midwifery
  20. Plenary 4: Leveraging Investments for Health and Sustainable Development
  21. Session 4A: Scaling-up Innovations: New ways of dealing with unfinished business
  22. Session 4B: Investing in Adolescent and Youth as Agents of Change
  23. Session 4C: Mobilization of resources to RMNCH investments for reaching 2035 targets
  24. Session 4E: Getting It Right: Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and Family Planning in the Post-2015 Agenda
  25. Plenary 5: Our Common Vision – Delivering health and development for women and children beyond 2015
  26. Youth engagement at the 2014 Partners' Forum
  27. Private sector leaders reflect on post-2015 priorities and commitments to newborns
  28. World leaders: Women and children must be central to new 2030 global poverty goals