WHO and Ministry of Health digitize information vital for a healthier Iraq [EN/AR] – Iraq

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7 March 2024, Baghdad, Iraq – WHO, in partnership with Iraq’s federal and Kurdistan regional health ministries, today concluded the launch of Phase II of the Health Resources and Services Availability Monitoring System (HeRAMS) project revision workshops.

This launch, devised as a series of 3 workshops spanning a couple of days each, engaged over 150 data collectors from across nearly all of Iraq’s directorates of health. The main aim was to provide them with a chance to review and update the HeRAMS paper and electronic formats, address Phase I issues, and rectify gaps in data collection and processing.

“WHO is pleased to coordinate the launch of this key project with the national health authorities. It has been encouraging to see the dedication of over 150 national personnel from the north, centre and south of the country as they regrouped to review the obstacles and challenges faced during the Phase I implementation and move forward to address them collectively,” said Dr Georges Ki-Zerbo, WHO Representative and Head of Mission in Iraq.

“These efforts will help maintain the applicability of this kind of survey and strengthen a digitized health system in Iraq. Congratulations to the Ministry of Health, WHO and all partners who contributed to this significant milestone,” he added.

The HeRAMS project was initiated in 2022 and finalized in 2023, bringing digitization to Iraq’s health system. HeRAMS will facilitate the digitization of the health system by providing a backup list of the country’s public health facilities in their entirety and identifying gaps in the health services delivered. A schedule of annual reviews was launched to monitor the implementation process and address any vagueness, gaps, and changes needed to update the project surveys and data processing.

Since the Phase I launch in 2022, Ministry of Health staff have visited 5205 health facilities to conduct the HeRAMS survey, and 13 reports have been generated. The project has also enhanced national data collection and management capacity through 6 training workshops, benefiting about 300 health staff and data collectors dedicated to working on HeRAMS.

Substantial progress has been made towards enhancing Iraq’s health system by digitizing health information, both about health infrastructure and human resources. In turn, the HeRAMS project is improving equitable access to quality health services for all in Iraq.

WHO would like to extend its gratitude to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) for its invaluable support in implementing this vital project.

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