The Ethiopian Health Information System: Where are we? And where are we going?
Health Information System (HIS) is a system that integrates data collection, management, and interpretation, including the use of the information to improve the quality of service and care through better management at all levels of health services (1). Early on, efforts to restructuring HIS to systematically collect, analyze, and report data for improved management in developing countries were undertaken by national program managers of vertically structured programs. In recent years, however, HIS in developing countries, including Ethiopia, has gained more and more attention as more effort by governments, international agencies, non-governmental organizations, donors, and other development partners seek to improve health care to reverse disease trends in these countries. The expansion of the health system, diagnostic capacity with the rapid transition of diseases epidemiology, and information technology played a crucial role in the increment of health data demand and information use in the health sector over the years (2). HIS encompasses a number of issues: data use, data quality, quality of care, e-Health and other relevant topics. This editorial provides a highlight of each of these topics and associated challenges. Because these entities are very much linked, it is not possible to expect successful progression in the use and quality of health information systems unless they are treated holistically.