It’s not possible to carry hundreds of DHS (Demographic and Health Surveys) reports to every meeting, or even sort through all of those PDFs on your laptop. Many program managers and policymakers in developing countries don’t have a full library of DHS reports or reliable access to an Internet connection to visit the MEASURE DHS website. Yet the expectation is that policy- and program-related decisions be data-driven, based on the evidence provided through research like the Demographic and Health Surveys.
The MEASURE DHS Mobile App
Luckily the rapidly growing use of mobile phones, including smart phones, has opened up a new channel for reaching DHS data users, both in Washington, DC, and in developing countries across the world. According to Pingdom, 15% of Africa’s internet browsing in May 2012 came from mobile devices, an increase of more than 150% from 2010. Now these users have an easy tool for accessing the most basic DHS information: the MEASURE DHS Mobile app.
MEASURE DHS mobile provides national-level data for 25 key indicators across 90 countries, including fertility, family planning use, vaccination, childhood mortality, nutrition, HIV testing and prevalence, maternal health, ITN use, and some basic background data such as literacy, education, and access to electricity. The data can be viewed in a chart or a table to compare across countries or over time in countries that have had more than one DHS survey. These key indicators can also be viewed on a map.