An inside look at Zambia’s new electronic immunization registry

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The following was originally written for and posted on the BID Initiative blog. It provides an update on the Zambian electronic immunization registry we’re building with Path, which we introduced in a previous post.

Ona Path Zambia
Photo: Ona. Zambia’s paper-based immunization reporting systems of the past, are time-intensive and often result in longer wait times for patients.

Back in February, I wrote about Ona’s visit to Livingstone, Zambia to work with PATH’s BID Initiative, the nurses in the health facilities, and other project stakeholders to collectively define a health information system that would ease the data collection and reporting burden of the nurses, while at the same time making their data more accessible and useful to them during their work. Coming home from that visit, we had a pretty good understanding of what the nurses’ pain points are, mostly around data entry and reporting requirements. After a rapid and iterative development phase, the app’s first release was launched in April and given to nurses from six health facilities in Livingstone District for the first phase of testing.

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Ona This Month May 2017 Newsletter

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What’s new?

Help site revamp

We are excited to announce our new help site, which makes finding answers faster with improved search functionality and article categories. The new site also lets you vote on whether articles are helpful so we can improve the content. Please note, you may experience 404 errors if you use links to the old website — in that case, use the search engine to find what you are looking for.

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New Help Site Launched

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We are excited to announce our new help site, which makes finding answers faster with improved search functionality and article categories.

The new site lets you vote on whether articles are helpful so we can improve the content. Please note, you may experience 404 errors if you use links to the old website — in that case, use the search engine to find what you are looking for.

As always, if it isn’t on the help site, check out the Ona Community Forum for an answer.


Ona at the 2017 ICT4D Conference

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Ona at the 2017 ICT4D Conference

Ona will be at the 2016 ICT4D Conference in Hyderabad on 15–16 May 2017. Erick Ngwiri, Director of Client Solutions, will be speaking about Empowering organizations worldwide with collective intelligence.

His talk will focus on how Ona uses geospatial check-ins to improve the targeting and delivery of IRS malaria spraying in over 120,000 homes in Zambia. With geospatial check-ins, we are able to link service delivery to physical structures in OpenStreetMap. Erick will also discuss how we will be applying this approach to child vaccine programmes with the goals of improving coverage and coordination in humanitarian aid.

If you want to meet up with Erick, send him a note at biz@ona.io.


Improve Sampling Accuracy with Weighted Random Selections

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Every data collector eventually runs into this issue at some point — you know the makeup of your population as a whole, but you only have access to a small group that isn’t representative. For example, you know that as a whole, the population pizza topping preference for plain cheese:pepperonni is 1:1. However, you only have access to a population heavy in vegetarians and you need opinions that reflect everyone.

In this article, we’ll build a survey function that randomly selects people to survey in a weighted manner. The weighting adjustment is a common statistical correction technique that compensates for the presence of bias. It gives underrepresented people or elements in your sample a larger weight than those over-represented. In the pizza example, you know you’ll need to weight the non-vegetarian open-to-eating-pepperoni people more in order to avoid interviewing too many vegetarians.

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