• K4Health Highlights

    Tara Sullivan

    CCP | Director
    © 2008 Lisa Basalla, Courtesy of Photoshare

    Lisa Basalla, a staff member with Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP), works with J&F Consultant on pretesting the sampling strategy for the end of project evaluation of the Malawi BRIDGE Project in Balaka District. © 2008 Lisa Basalla, Courtesy of Photoshare

    What is knowledge management?

    Knowledge management (KM) is the systematic process of collecting and curating knowledge and connecting people to it so they can act effectively. Knowledge management work occurs around the elements KM cycle (assessment, generation, capture, synthesis, and sharing) with the ultimate goal of getting the latest knowledge into practice across all levels of the health system.

    Knowledge management has always been a part of global health and development programs, yet for some, it is considered a new area. Global public health programs have been using KM in a variety of forms for decades! Think of all the publications, guidelines, job aides, and websites that have been produced to get the latest evidence into use! Over time, KM approaches have evolved to take advantage of digital technologies and to address the need to connect health professionals to tacit knowledge—which is best observed or communicated through face to face interaction that allows deeper probing and an iterative back and forth exchange. Today’s KM practitioners value the social aspect of knowledge management, which takes place through human interaction. We call this “Social KM.”  

  • K4Health Highlights

    Nandini Jayarajan

    K4Health, CCP | Program Officer
    © 2011 A.M. Ahad, Courtesy of Photoshare.

    © 2011 A.M. Ahad, Courtesy of Photoshare.

    At the Knowledge for Health (K4Health) project, we believe that knowledge saves lives. Organizations that apply proven knowledge management techniques can improve the quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of health workers and programs. This in turn improves health outcomes.

    Knowledge management can be a dry and technical topic that’s tough to get excited about. It can be difficult to understand, and its value can be hard to see. For those who are new to the topic, knowledge management is the process of collecting and curating knowledge, then connecting people to it so they can act effectively.

    Sounds easy enough, right? Think of it as a process that helps your team get better organized at work so that everyone knows exactly what they are responsible for and feels confident in their ability to do their job.

  • K4Health Highlights

    Elizabeth Futrell

    CCP | Content Development Lead/Program Officer II

    A surgical checklist. An international family planning conference. An eLearning course. A photo-sharing website. What do these things have in common? They are all examples of essential knowledge management tools that advocates, donors, decision makers, program managers, service providers, and others can use to share the latest know-how in order to improve public health.

  • Amanda Puckett

    IntraHealth International | Technical Advisor, HRH and Knowledge Management


    Amanda Puckett gets her temperature taken while working in Guinea as a precaution to screen for Ebola.

    Amanda Puckett gets her temperature taken while working in Guinea as a precaution to screen for Ebola, 2015. 

    This blog post originally appeared February 16, 2015 on Vital, IntraHealth International's Blog. 

    The culture in Guinea is vibrant and thrives on close-knit communities and personal relationships. When the largest-ever outbreak of Ebola started here in March 2014, it threatened not only the health of Guinea’s population but also the ties that bind its people together.

    Since then, there have been over 3,000 confirmed cases and over 2,000 deaths.

    At the turn of the year, the number of new cases started to drastically decrease, but since I arrived in Conakry in early February, the pendulum has swung and cases are sharply on the rise again.

  • James BonTempo

    CCP | Director of ICT & Innovation
    Image by James BonTempo in one of the sessions at the 2014 Global mHealth Forum.

    Image by James BonTempo in one of the sessions at the 2014 Global mHealth Forum.

    It is hard to believe it’s already been two months since the Global mHealth Forum. The inaugural event, an effort of the mHealth Working Group’s Advisory Board in collaboration with the Personal Connected Health Alliance, was co-located at the mHealth Summit. The Forum exceeded all expectations, attracting more than 500 participants from 50 countries for two chockfull days of panels, roundtables, posters, demos, meet-ups and all manner of formal and informal gatherings.

    At this point, we (the mHealth Working Group Advisory Board) are already well into the conversation to determine what to do for the next Forum. But what if you weren’t able to attend this past December? Or you were there but weren’t able to sit in on all of the great sessions? No need to worry! There are several ways that you can catch up on what transpired.

  • Nandini Jayarajan

    K4Health, CCP | Program Officer

    Before the 2014 Global mHealth Forum, if you’d asked me to draft a budget for developing and deploying a mHealth solution, I’d have shrugged and thought, “Sure. Piece of cake.”  As a program manager and someone with a fair amount of experience in mHealth, I would have felt confident mapping out a process and assigning a budget to each step. Then, at the Forum, I had the opportunity to attend an interactive session in the Finance Track that made me consider how my personal perspective could affect budgeting. The session, titled “What Does mHealth Really Cost? Understanding the Question,” was presented by Eric Couper of Abt Associates and Jonathan Jackson of Dimagi, Inc. and intended to teach people the importance of preparing a reasonable budget for a mHealth solution. My biggest takeaway was how necessary it is to include many roles and perspectives in the decision-making process.

    We were broken up into groups, given a case study of an mHealth intervention in Guatemala, and told to determine a budget for a one-year intervention that moved through the steps of design, development, test, train, and deploy. The staff roles they identified for the activity were an expat project manager, an expat lead designer, a local IT manager, a local trainer, and an expat trainer.

  • K4Health Highlights

    Jarret Cassaniti

    CCP | Program Officer
    A statue in Yola, Adamawa State. © 2007 Jarret Cassaniti

    A statue in Yola, Adamawa State. © 2007 Jarret Cassaniti

    This blog post originally appeared on a LinkedIn blog on January 26, 2015 and has been slightly modified for the K4Health blog. 

    Two atrocities were committed earlier this month, one in France and the other in Nigeria. As an article in Time magazine explains, the attack in France garnered more attention in America because it was, in both senses of the phrase, closer to home. Prolonged news coverage last April of a mass kidnapping in Nigeria by Boko Haram turned out to be an exception; the attention didn’t last and the girls have not been found. As Boko Haram continues its devastating rampages, presidential campaigning hits the home stretch and Nigerians wonder what Election Day, scheduled for February 14, will bring.

    As a business traveler to Nigeria, I take notice when Boko Haram strikes. But Boko Haram was not a concern during my first trip to Nigeria in 2007, as an Emory University graduate student, because it had not yet been established. What did concern me, though, was the political and ethnic violence in Jos, Plateau State, the dynamics of which foreshadowed my research with nomadic groups in Adamawa State, where Boko Haram is now active.

  • Leigh Wynne

    FHI 360 | Senior Technical Officer, Research Utilization

    This blog post originally appeared January 6, 2015 on The Pump, JSI's blog promoting and improving health. 

    In order to achieve FP2020’s goals and ensuring that people have access to a broad range of contraceptives, it is essential that the Standard Days Method® (SDM) be included as part of the family planning (FP) modern method mix in health facilities and community-based family planning (CBFP) programs. On December 9, 2014, Advancing Partners & Communities (APC) launched its series of CBFP related technical consultations. This consultation focused on raising awareness of SDM as part of the method mix. Close to 50 people representing over 20 different organizations, including representatives from USAID as well as country representatives of programs in India, Mali, Nigeria, Rwanda and Uganda, convened to discuss the integration of SDM into CBFP programs.

  • Jarret Cassaniti

    CCP | Program Officer


    A health post in Northeast Nigeria. © 2007 Jarret Cassaniti.

    A health post in Northeast Nigeria. © 2007 Jarret Cassaniti. 

    This blog post originally appeared on a LinkedIn Blog on January 17, 2015 and has been slightly modified for the K4Health blog. 

    At the mHealth Summit last month, a panelist spoke about “flipping the clinic” and fanning the flames of change. Flipping might best be known as a derogatory gesture or, in somewhat better light, as a real estate tactic that contributed to the housing crisis of 2008.

    Of course the panelist, Dr. Michael Painter, Senior Program Officer at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), was talking about something different. He was talking about flipping the clinic in the way that innovating educators have changed their teaching methods.

  • Kate Plourde, MPH

    FHI 360 | Technical Officer, Research Utilization
    A young girl uses a cell phone at a market in Ghana. © 2006 Joitske Hulsebosch, Courtesy of Photoshare.
    A young girl uses a cell phone at a market in Ghana. © 2006 Joitske Hulsebosch, Courtesy of Photoshare.

    People often assume that, as a woman under 30, I must be a technology expert—based on no other credential than my age. While I may tire of explaining what an app is or how to tweet, the truth is that young people are in fact the largest consumers of new technology. In the last five years, the number of mobile phone subscribers worldwide has doubled to almost six billion, of which nearly a third are under the age of 30. Growth in mobile phone use has been particularly high in low- and middle-income countries, where an estimated 80 percent of future subscribers—including millions of technologically-savvy youth—reside.

    This growing population presents both opportunities and challenges for development, and underscores the need for greater investment in youth health. Given the high penetration of mobile phone use among young people, targeting them with mobile health (mHealth) interventions seems like a “no-brainer.” Yet, it has taken some time for the global health and development community to realize that young people represent interested consumers and early adopters of mHealth tools. To date, there are still only a limited number of programs that directly target youth. However, at this year’s Global mHealth Forum at the mHealth Summit, youth were front and center.