Efforts to monitor the implementation of national health strategies - and have a comprehensive overview of progress and performance - are hampered by poor quality and incomplete data, and by time-consuming reporting processes of different partners.

IHP+ encourages the development of more unified approaches to monitoring, based on country monitoring platforms in which all parties have confidence. Guidance has been developed. The Commission on Information and Accountability for Women’s and Children’s Health has adopted the approach.

A growing number of countries have assessed their current monitoring and evaluation arrangements. Many have prepared roadmaps that set out the steps to be taken towards one country-led monitoring platform in order to generate better information and enable better oversight of results and resources by governments and partners.

The roadmaps indicate how development partners can contribute to strengthening such a platform. These are linked to Country M&E assessments and roadmaps of the monitoring and evaluation component of national health strategies, and preliminary roadmaps for accountability for health.

Joint Annual Health Sector Reviews (JARs) have existed since the early 1990s and are designed for ministries of health and their health sector partners to jointly review the national health plan, or assess sector performance during a given period.

JARs’ aims match current trends for increased accountability for results, including mutual accountability between partners, improved policy dialogue and transparency. JARs can help assure a solid basis for policy discussions and for identifying how to amend plans in the light of emerging issues. In 2012 IHP+ commissioned a study to review experience of JARS and lessons in nine countries that regularly hold JARs (five of which are members of IHP+). 

Health Data Collaborative

The Health Data Collaborative (HDC) was launched in March 2016 to take forward the IHP+ principles to achieve a country-led platform for information and accountability. IHP+ has supported its establishment and operation from the onset, including being a co-sponsor. 

The HDC is a joint effort by countries, development partners, civil society and academia to help countries improve their information and accountability systems, including the quality of health data, in order to improve performance of the sector at all levels. This is particularly relevant for managing for results and to track progress towards the health-related Sustainable Development Goals, including the underpinning target of UHC. It is about improving collective action to maximise the impact of domestic and external investments in country health information systems. 

See also Key Issues: M&E, Tools: M&E Platform

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Key Issues