To develop this guide, we gathered key informant interviews from over 25 country programs that have been involved in forecasting demand for a particular NUM. The purpose of the interviews was to better understand how programs currently address the issue of forecasting for NUMs, given the lack of trend data; and to gather experience-based lessons learned to improve forecasting accuracy. Interviewees representatived global and local implementing organizations, including DKT International, FHI 360, International Consortium for Emergency Contraception (ICEC), iPlus Solutions, the Institute for Reproductive Health (IRH) at Georgetown University, JHPIEGO, John Snow, Inc. (JSI), Management Sciences for Health (MSH), Population Council, and Population Services International (PSI). Project partners also spoke with officials from several MOHs. The interviews captured perspectives from the following country programs: Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, Kenya, Liberia, Nepal, Rwanda, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. For a list of interviews completed by organization and NUM, please see Appendix 1.

Additionally, we analyzed data from forecasts done or received by the USAID | DELIVER PROJECT, and the project’s Procurement Planning and Monitoring Report (PPMR) from 2006-2010. The PPMR is a monthly report that provides information on the supply situation of country programs and any short-term supply issues. From the forecast data, we were able to (1) compare forecasting error rates of NUMs with more utilized methods (male condoms, oral pills, injectables); and (2) better understand if the lack of trend data influenced the forecast accuracy. From the PPMR, we were able to look at the stock levels of NUMs, over time.

Last, we completed a desk review of existing forecasting guides and tools to assess how NUMs are addressed, if at all. Most of the tools/resources reviewed during this process are referenced in Section 7: Resources.

The guide was reviewed by 3-6 staff members in each partner organization (IRH, JSI, PSI), including four reviewers with field programs. After this review round was complete, we solicited feedback from members of the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition (RHSC).