Implementing GIS for Multiple Health Programs in Health Management: Understanding Limitations in the Context of DHIS2 GIS in Malawi

London Journal of Research in Humanities and Social Sciences
Volume | Issue | Compilation
Authored by Patrick Albert Chikumba , Gloria Chisakasa
Classification: FOR Code: 119999
Keywords: boundary object, CoP, DHIS2 GIS, GIS implementation, health management.
Language: English

Since the introduction of DHIS2 in Malawi in 2012, reports have been presented in the form of tables and charts. However, static maps have been used since 2002 in some cases in MoH to assist in visualisation of data. Static maps are difficult to update and integrate with other information systems. Hence, in 2015, MoH started the implementation of DHIS2 GIS as the interactive GIS to promote spatial analysis, integration and visualisation in HMIS, which involves multiple health programs. The paper intends to discuss data and technical limitations with the understanding that issues of GIS implementation can differ from one context to the other. This is the qualitative interpretive case study conducted in Malawi at the national level of Ministry of Health from March 2016 to January 2017. Participant observation was the main method for data collection, which was supplemented with interviews and analysis of documents and spatial data. It was found out that incompleteness of spatial data, inaccuracies in data processing and accessibility of DHIS2 GIS are key limitations, which may affect the accommodation of DHIS2 GIS to different health programs. The paper has suggested the spatial data completeness and DHIS2 GIS upgrade as ways of improving the usability and shareability of the system. However, both ways need adequate resources particularly expertise.


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