Using Measurement to Drive Results
July 22, 2009
We are in the midst of a major transition in the core U.S. goals for global health. During the period 2003–2008, the predominant goal was to respond to a health emergency, through large-scale, dramatic, single-disease initiatives: the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and subsequently the President's Malaria Initiative (PMI). Increasingly now, the overriding goal is to help create in partner countries sustainable, long-term programs that will decrease mortality and morbidity in most at-risk populations while strengthening health systems. That will involve building on the success of the HIV/AIDS and malaria platforms, while broadening approaches to put a new emphasis on maternal and child health, family planning, and prevention of high-burden, high-risk conditions.
In this new phase, there is a corresponding paradigm shift with respect to measurement: from a focus on inputs and process to a higher priority on ensuring that U.S. investments are leading to the greatest health impacts possible. The ability to link new goals with concrete results is contingent on this new paradigm of measurement.