Design and evaluation of a web-based decision support tool for district-level disease surveillance in a low-resource setting
During the 2014 West African Ebola Virus outbreak it became apparent that the initial response to the outbreak was hampered by limitations in the collection, aggregation, analysis and use of data for intervention planning. As part of the post-Ebola recovery phase, IBM Research Africa partnered with the Port Loko District Health Management Team (DHMT) in Sierra Leone and GOAL Global, to design, implement and deploy a web-based decision support tool for district-level disease surveillance. This paper discusses the design process and the functionality of the first version of the system. The paper presents evaluation results prior to a pilot deployment and identifies features for future iterations. A qualitative assessment of the tool prior to pilot deployment indicates that it improves the timeliness and ease of using data for making decisions at the DHMT level.