Download pdf - Newsletter, August 2012

Page 1: Newsletter, August 2012

Malo e lelei, Ni Sa Bula vinaka, Talofa lava, Kia Orana, Taloha Ni, Fakalofa, lahi atu, Aloha, Namaste, Ulufale mai, Iakwe, Alii, Ko na mauri, Kia ora and hello One year ago this week (16 August 2011) is the exact date when the Re-gional HIS Strategic Plan was launched during the PHIN Meeting in Nadi, Fiji. Over the past 12 months a number of PHIN member countries have begun improving their HIS and sharing their progress with the region at large. Activities occurring among our mem-ber countries are varied, and range from assessments of vital registration systems; development of health data dictionaries; unique achievements such as the Pacific Health Dialog; plus many others. Despite all the challenges we face, the overall health information develop-ment pathway set out by PHIN re-

mains the right path to follow. With so much going on, it is im-portant to recognise the signifi-cant health information transition occurring in the region. Many regions in the world are yet to benefit from a strategic approach to HIS strengthening such as what we have in the Pacific. We should not lose sight that expertise, countries, organisa-tions and development partners are mostly participating on a vol-untary basis just for the sake of having better and sound health information systems in our re-spective countries. It is now that we can help each other through our Regional HIS and Vital Statis-tics Strategic Plans to maximize country benefits. To all members, representatives of Pacific Island Countries and Territories, development partners

Upcoming events:

Practical writing

for evidence-

based decision-

making, October,

Suva, Fiji

HIS Short

Course, 22—26

October, Suva,


Workshop 1.2,

29 October—2

November, Nadi,


CRVS Short

Course, 12—16

November, Bris-

bane, Australia

Pacific Health Information Network

Volume 2, Issue 1

August 2012

Pacific Health Dialog

Strengthening HIS in the Pacific

The Special HIS Edition of the Pacific Health Dialog was final-ised in July this year, and it provides a unique representa-

tion on current issues and chal-lenges for health information in the Pacific. The publication is also an im-portant testament to the pro-gress of HIS in the region, and will serve to promote recent achievements, goals and devel-opments in HIS. Congratulations again to those PHIN members who contrib-uted articles to the Dialog. Read the Edition online at

4th Pacific NCD Forum

‘Mitigating the Crisis’

In June 2012, participants from 19 Pacific Island Coun-tries and Territories con-vened in Auckland, New Zealand for the 4th Pacific NCD Forum. Hosted by WHO and SPC, and as part of the 2-1-22 Pacific NCD Program, the forum focused on ‘mitigating the crisis’ and aimed to facilitate countries in identifying and prioritis-ing actions to strengthen national NCD responses. A small number of PHIN members were also invited to participate and provide

insight into the HIS chal-lenges of NCD prevention and control. Significant results of the forum was agreement to: 1. Work towards a set of

Pacific targets, aligned with global targets, to ensure a unified fight against NCDs in the Pa-cific and also introduce country-specific indica-tors as appropriate

2. Invest in strengthening monitoring, surveillance and evaluation of NCD outcomes (mortality, disease registration

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and friends, we appreciate your respective contribu-tion in the past 12 months and please bare with us. Special acknowledgement goes out to the HIS Hub for their professional coordi-nating and secretariat roles. Faka’apa’apa atu (Respectfully Yours) PHIN Management Team Sione Hufanga (President) Shivnay Naidu (Vice-President)

PHIN in 2012: Reflecting on achievements and planning for the future

Page 2: Newsletter, August 2012

For more information about

PHIN, or go online at

PHIN Newsletter August 2012

There have been many important developments in HIS in the region over the past eight months, and PHIN is pleased to have the support of a number of major devel-opment partners working in health information and vital statistics in the Pacific. One of the most important initiatives established to improve vital statistics is the development of the Pacific Vital Statistics Action Plan by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC). A number of agencies are involved in implementing this Plan, including the HIS Knowledge Hub, WHO, UNFPA, UNICEF, Fiji National Univer-sity and Australian Bureau of Statistics. Numerous activities have already taken place and more are planned for 2013. The following table provides an overview of the countries involved, and activities com-pleted or planned.

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As stated in the Regional Health Information Systems Strategic Plan, one of the key functions of PHIN is to pro-mote the sharing and application of experiential knowl-edge related to HIS. There are a number of ways PHIN members can access key resources, documents and presentations related to HIS: 1. All documents are available to download from the

PHIN website. Private documents (such as meet-ing minutes, and any documents not for public distribution) are saved in the ‘member’s only area’

2. High-priority documents are also available to view online at

3. PowerPoint presentations are available to view online at

4. Other media (videos and photos) are available to view online at

If you have any requests for documents, or have re-sources available to share with other PHIN members, please contact the Secretariat ([email protected]). Recent uploads include: Health data dictionary (Tonga) Special HIS edition of the Pacific Health Dialog District health management information system

policy (South Africa) Standard operating procedures for data manage-

ment (Ghana) PowerPoint on cause-specific mortality and non-

communicable diseases PowerPoint on the aims and mission of PHIN Video on Teanibuaka Tabunga’s (Kiribati) fellow-

ship experience with the HIS Hub

Accessing resources, documents, presentations and more

and certification), exposures (risk factor surveys) and the health system response and use information to guide action.

Civil registration and vital statistics were identified as important compo-nents of the health information system that need to be strengthened for effec-tive responses to NCDs. Since the forum, the WHO office in Suva have followed-up with countries to identify technical assistance required to improve vital registration and cause-of-death certification. A work-plan is in development and ac-tivities are being coordinated through a number of agencies, including the HIS Knowledge Hub and Secretariat of the Pacific Community. A Meeting Report is available on the member’s section of the PHIN website.

Pacific Vital Statistics Action Plan

Cook Islands, Nauru, Niue, Tokelau, Tuvalu

Assessment of civil registration systems and development of action plans

Multi-stakeholder workshop held in 2011, follow-up workshop planned for Oc-tober 2012 in Suva

Federated States of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, Palau, Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands

Assessment of civil registration systems and development of action plans

Multi-stakeholder workshop held in April 2012

Fiji, Tonga, Samoa

Vital statistics working groups convened in Fiji and Tonga

Multi-stakeholder meetings planned for September (Fiji) and October (Tonga)

In-country visits in Samoa to prepare for work in 2013

Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Kiribati

Multi-stakeholder workshop planned for late 2012 or early 2013