|A large amount of health information is routinely collected in many parts of the health system.
SARRAH has supported the development of a national health information centre with up-to-date information on all aspects of health and health systems in South Africa.
The National Health Information Repository and Data Warehouse (NHIRD) is a giant ‘data warehouse’ integrating data from various specialist information systems.
A large amount of South African health information is already routinely collected, but it is scattered in many databases: there is information on health and disease, as well as all aspects of national and provincial health departments and facilities. Other government departments also collect statistics and socio-economic information that are relevant to health. Donors and research projects continually generate valuable health information. The NHIRD is integrating the information from all these sources so that it can be used by national and provincial health departments to plan and strengthen the delivery of health services. This integrated electronic database is seen as essential for the smooth functioning of the forthcoming National Heath Insurance scheme.
SARRAH funded a team of specialists from the Health Information Systems Programme (HISP) to develop the database and infrastructure.
The NHIRD, which is housed on the 16th floor of the NDOH's Civitas building was launched by the Minister of Health in 2011 and has been demonstrated to journalists, development partners and other stakeholders. Training, capacity building has also been provided for provincial offices, which are now able to use the new system.
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