Raising the Bars: Using Data to Design Targeted HIV Interventions

By Lucy Slater October 14, 2014

NASTAD’s Global Program works internationally to build the organizational, programmatic and human resource capacity of partner Ministries of Health. The HIV Care Continuum provides a tool to measure progress toward increased access and retention to clinical services. By supporting all components of the HIV Care Continuum, we move closer toward achieving an AIDS-free generation.

In this series of blog posts, we provide a snapshot of how we are supporting locally designed strategies to support the HIV Care Continuum in the countries where we work. Click here to read Part I and Part II of this series.

Part III: Using Data to Design Targeted Interventions

The effective use of data and technology enables Ministries of Health to more effectively target efforts and resources where they will have the greatest impact. NASTAD Global is working to develop and strengthen national and local HIV evidence-based planning and resource allocation processes to enable Ministries of Health to raise the bars of their HIV Care Continuum. NASTAD has been engaged in evidence-based planning for public health impact since the early days of the HIV epidemic. Early successes in the U.S., such as CDC’s Community Planning initiative, helped to drive NASTAD’s commitment to this approach. Over the past ten years, NASTAD has helped to guide and institutionalize this practice at the sub-national levels in Botswana, Cambodia, and Ethiopia.

Uganda Evidence-based Planning

NASTAD facilitating district-led evidence-based planning in Uganda.



In Botswana, District Multi-Sectoral AIDS Committees (DMSACs) are responsible for managing the district HIV response through the planning and implementation of annual District HIV/AIDS Plans. Since 2004, NASTAD has provided technical assistance to the Ministry of Local Government (MLG) to build the capacity of DMSACs to use an evidence-based community planning (EBP) approach for the development of these plans. NASTAD facilitated the development of an EBP ToolKit, and provided in-depth, on-site training and mentoring to all districts on the ToolKit. NASTAD trained existing MLG district advisors on EBP and provided side-by-side mentorship to districts with MLG advisors.

NASTAD has since fully transitioned the EBP program to MLG, ensuring that local government officials are overseeing and managing the use of current, quality data for program planning and resource allocation.

“Before evidence-based planning, we were doing haphazard planning; we planned for activities as they came up. Now, on a quarterly basis, we collect data and use it for planning. We identify issues, prioritize, and develop an annual plan”. District AIDS Coordinator, Kanye District, Botswana, May 2012

The approach we’ve taken to date, the materials we’ve developed, and the lessons we’ve learned are helping to frame new data-driven initiatives that we’re bringing to South Africa, Uganda, and Mozambique to help raise the bars of the local HIV Care Continuum.

If you are interested in learning more about how NASTAD Global works to strengthen the HIV Care Continuum in all of the countries where we work, please contact Lucy Slater.

Visit NASTAD.org/global to learn more about the NASTAD Global Program.

Gen Meredith, Associate Director, Global Program, NASTAD, and Anna Carroll, Senior Associate, Global Program, NASTAD, also contributed to the development of this post.