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Partnering for Success: Do Primary Health Care Facilities Supported by Development Partners do any better in M&E?

Title: Partnering for Success: Do Primary Health Care Facilities Supported by Development Partners do any better in M&E? 

Authors: Tsholofelo Adelekan, Elvis Ganyaupfu, Anzél Schönfeldt

Function of lead author:  Director, Monitoring and Evaluation

Institution of lead author: Gauteng Department of Health

Relevance for the conference theme ‘Partnering for Success: how M&E Can Strengthen Partnerships for Sustainable Development’:

With this paper, we aim to highlight the successes that can be derived from maximising the use of M&E in improving health systems management through partnerships and some of the pertinent mechanisms that the public sector and development partner still need to improve to ensure that results of the M&E efforts are realised leading to stronger accountability and better governance. 


As part of its initiative to improve monitoring and evaluation (M&E) at sub-district and Primary Health Care (PHC) levels, the Gauteng Department of Health entered into a partnership with various development partners who were already working at District level.

The need to harmonise government partnership with non-profit (development)  partners stemmed from a myriad of challenges. These issues indicated that there is limited harmonisation and systematic measurement of efforts and accountability by partner organisations in the areas of M&E or areas of information use. To address the aforementioned challenges, the department outlined the kind of support it required. This enabled the Department to address some of the areas that affects use of strategic information at service delivery level, as well as improve on the integrity of performance information.

This paper shares experiences from both the department and a development partner, MEASURE Evaluation SIFSA, whose collaboration is making headways in improving M&E, data quality and use of information at various levels of the data management system. A public health facility baseline evaluation, which forms part of this partnership, is currently underway and preliminary findings on the effectiveness of the partnership model will be presented at the conference. Additionally, this paper aims to explore some of the emerging outcomes of overall partner collaboration and also aims to determine the differences that exists between public health facilities that are supported by development partners versus those without partner organisation support. Facility results derived from routine public health information data will be compared in terms of the partner support it receives versus health outputs and outcomes.

We intend to also use the evidence from the evaluation to then explore the reasons behind the patterns and use this to strengthen accountability and harmonisation of efforts between provincial and development partners. It will also make reference to the key characteristics of the journey leading to the results that will be presented whilst highlighting the aspects of the partnership that could be enhanced by further strengthening M&E of the partnership.