Expanded Quality Improvement Using Information power
Expanded Quality Improvement Using Information power (EQUIP) is a collaborative model for quality improvement. We short-term learning approaches to support quality improvement teams (QIT). It is a district-scale, proof-of-concept study that evaluates a quality management approach for maternal and newborn health including communities, health facilities, and district health managers, supported by high-quality data from independent continuous household and health facility surveys. The study will generate robust evidence about the effectiveness of quality management and will inform future nationwide implementation approaches for health system strengthening in low-resource settings
The proof-of-concept for this project was initially done in Tandahimba district in Mtwara region in Tanzania and Mayuge in Uganda between 2011 and 2014. The approach has two main pillars: 1) “learning sessions” which take place about four times per year and include refresher training on selected topics of maternal and newborn health as well as sharing of progress and obstacles in the use of quality improvement, and 2) “mentoring and coaching” of the QIT at their working place to support the continuous quality improvement.
The approach is flexible to accommodate any new policies and to support existing structures. EQUIP approach works at community and health facility with synergistic effects. Village volunteers complement health facility staff, particularly to reinforce behaviour change on health facility delivery and birth preparedness through changing social norms, thus strengthening demand side and changes towards more patient-centred healthcare. It also documented improved implementation of essential interventions for maternal and newborn health, such as infection prevention, resuscitation of newborns, and active management of third stage of labor, thus documenting clear improvements in implementation and thus strengthening supply side.