Level of health data quality and information use, and contributing factors in the Benishangul Gumuze Region, west Ethiopia: using social ecological framework
Background: Creating responsibility for quality healthcare data and utilization are among the basic functions of leadership. While the benefits of data quality and use are well known, the evidence around the role of healthcare information systems leadership and governance in sustaining data demand and use is limited. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the level and contributing factors of health data quality and information use in Assosa district, Benishangule Gumuze Region.
Methods: A mixed approach design, using qualitative exploration and a facility-based quantitative cross-sectional approach was used. Seventeen departments from two health facilities were enrolled for the quantitative component, while 28 in-depth interviews were conducted to complete the qualitative part of the study. A phenomenological approach was used to explore factors influencing the quality and use of health data. Quantitative data was analyzed descriptively using tables and graphs, whereas qualitative data was analyzed using content analysis guided by the framework for the social ecological model.
Results: The average levels of information use and report accuracy were 38.6 and 119.33, respectively. Three themes emerged, explaining the main factors that influence quality data generation: individual characteristics, facility and environmental factors, and leadership and governance characteristics. Individual characteristics were motivation, capacity building, commitment, and digital literacy, while facility and environmental factors included infrastructure, healthcare information system resources and supportive supervision. Furthermore, among the leadership and governance related factors, healthcare data, assigning the right person, and system regulation were some of the factors which were identified.
Conclusions: The level of health data quality and its utilization was low during the Asossa city adminstration. The unfriendly physical and organizational working environments and high staff turnover which negatively affected the leadership and governance of the health system are some of the reasons which were sighted with regards to the poor quality of data and information use. Therefore, interventions that have multifaceted effects on data quality and use, such as improving leadership and governance practices and behavior should be implemented. [Ethiop. J. Health Dev. 2022;36 (SI-1)]