Rapid mobile phone based surveys (Scott Chaplowe, IFRC)
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Rapid mobile phone based surveys (Scott Chaplowe, IFRC)

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  • To decrease dramatically the time and effort needed to complete data collectionEnables timely reportingResults are rapidly available for decision-making: emergency & development programming.
  • Epi Info is public domain statistical software for epidemiology developed by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia (USA).The mobile phone software used for RAMP is EpiSurveyor, created by the not-for-profit organization Datadyne.MIS= Malaria Indicator SurveyRBM= Roll Back MalariaThe Red Cross National Societies at headquarters and branch levels played a leading role in the surveys, and Red Cross volunteers were recruited and trained to collect the data in the field survey. There are many public health problems in Africa that could have been chosen to pilot the surveys. However, malaria was selected to test the RAMP tools. The pilot surveys in Africa established conclusively that National Societies can be a core partner in leading a RAMP survey, with community-based volunteers able to collect data using mobile phones, and the results being available within days of the last interviews in the survey. Lessons learnt from the pilot surveys have been used to refine the RAMP survey methodology and tools, and to provide sample materials in the RAMP toolkit.
  • Smart phones increasingly as cheaper
  • RAMP deceases the time between data collection and the production of the survey resultsThe results can be available within days of the last interviews
  • Traditionally, the paper questionnaires used in the field are sent to a central location where the data are entered into a computer.
  • Quality assurance: SMS program can automatically feedback on mistakes, i.e. type “I” instead of “1” or “O” instead of “0” automatically generates a correction request to sender. You cant do any of the three last points with RAMP yet !!
  • Trees!
  • Reduced time = more timely decision making and action. Real-time dataset exported for rapid analysis and reporting purposesMore timely with changes/adjustments to survey tool
  • Reduced monetary & environmental costs Paper usage, data entry, transportation and associated costs (i.e. change a form)Additional SMART phone features i.e. GPS, pictures, videoMobile phones are widely-available and understood technology, (jumps digital divides in developing countries).
  • Paper and data entry
  • Not suitable for very long questionnaires with a large quantity of skip patternsNo “magic bullet” – the work is still in the details Survey design, enumerator training, data collection and analysis, and effective reporting and dissemination.Things to improve – i.e. offline form generation (i.e. on long airline flights)
  • - Examples might include: surveys to estimate the percentage of households that were visited by community-based volunteers to discuss the care and repair of mosquito netssurveys to estimate the percentage of households that are receiving clean watersurveys to estimate the percentage of six year old female children that are attending school
  • MIS=Malaria Indicator SurveyDHS=Demographic and Health Survey
  • To decrease dramatically the time and effort needed to complete data collectionEnables timely reportingResults are rapidly available for decision-making: emergency & development programming.

Rapid mobile phone based surveys (Scott Chaplowe, IFRC) Rapid mobile phone based surveys (Scott Chaplowe, IFRC) Presentation Transcript

  • Rapid Mobile Phone-based Surveys (RAMP) for Evidence-based Emergency Response ALNAP 28th Annual Meeting, 5-7 March 2013, Washington, D.C. Scott Chaplowe, Senior M&E Officer, IFRC Rose Donna, Director, Datadyne.org Jason Peat, Senior Officer Public Health, IFRC Amanda Mcclelland, Emergency Health Officer, IFRC Joel Selanikio, CEO DataDyne Group Mac Ottenwww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Presentation Overview Application of mobile technology (RAMP) to address specific challenges in data collection during emergency operations. 1) Introduce RAMP 2) How RAMP works 3) Emergency contexts 4) Key considerationswww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • What is RAMP? RAMP (Rapid Mobile Phone-based Surveys) is a survey methodology utilizing mobile phones to help RCRC National Societies, governments, NGOs and other partners efficiently conduct quality surveys that:  Reduced time  Reduced cost  Improved quality assurance  Limited external technical assistancewww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds. View slide
  • RAMP Background (www.ifrc.org/ramp) 1. Developed by IFRC in partnership with WHO, CDC, and other partners. 2. Initial focus = malaria program household surveys  Four pilots in Africa 2011-2012 (Kenya, Namibia and Nigeria), 3. Refine and developed trio of user guides: 1. Designing a RAMP survey 2. Implementing a RAMP survey 3. Training a RAMP survey team 4. Scale-up to other program areas – increase survey functionality – use of SMSwww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds. View slide
  • RAMP takes advantage of 2 technologies 1. Mobile phone to collect data (Low-cost, standard mobile phones, as well as Android, Symbian, Blackberry, SMS, and iPhone) 2. Web-based software application Enables mobile phones to become a data collection platformwww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • How does RAMP work? 2. Data collection on phone 1. Develop survey on website 3. Transmit data 4. Collate/analyze 5. Data Reports data on computerwww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Connectivity Internet Internet Required Not Required • Create/edit surveys • Collect data • View/export data • Create reports Can be cellular, wifi, cablewww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Data monitoring and analysis  Preliminary analysis available before data collection is completewww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Timely Reporting Survey bulletins/updates Full survey reportswww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Digital Data Collection – Changing the way we work The “old” The “new”  Paper questionnaires filled out in  Mobile and internet-based the field technologies used to reduce time for data collection to reporting  Data entered into a computer at a central location  Enables rapid reporting of results, decision making, and action  Data analysis and reporting often takes months to complete  Empowers local ownership of evaluation and research  Local capacity is often under- utilized and there is a dependence on external expertswww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Anything that can be put on a form Vaccination coverage Surveillance Supply chain management Household surveys Clinic surveys Supervisory checklistswww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • RAMP Potential in Emergencies? Beginning to explore the potential of RAMP in emergency context:  Site assessment – needs, damage  Community assessment – needs, damage  Beneficiary registration  Distribution of emergency (and non-emergency) items  Baseline/endline data collection (monitoring and impact study)  Repeated surveys to track time trends for key indicators  Beneficiary communication – (broadcast Terra)  Beneficiary/community monitoring  Disaster preparedness – EWS monitoringwww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • SMS Disease Surveillance Systems  Piloting in community based disease surveillance  Sierra Leone – 400 community volunteers distributing ORS.  Referred only 5% of cases of AWD they saw in community = only 5% of cases were potentially recorded in normal MoH system.  RAMP allows real time communication and data gathering suitable for this context.  Problems with integration and harmonization of data between community and MoH.  But SMS proved real time information to assist program prioritization in outbreak scenarios.www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • SMS Considerations  Simplified questions rather than full surveys  Coding syntax with 2 to 7 key variables as best practice  Quantity of messages handled depend on networks, and whether staggered or simultaneous reporting.  Paper form can be used to facilitate data entry to SMS  Quality assurance auto feedback  Reminder SMS to field person to report data at a set time  Thank you SMS to confirm receipt of data.  Ability to send airtime to the mobile account if someone reports from a common central account.www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Benefits?www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Benefits – decision making  Data rapidly available for decision-making  Maintain data control  Scalable for studies of varying sizes  Shared, electronic database to compare across contexts and with partners to build a body of evidence related to impactwww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Benefits - management  Cost effective  Do not have to reinvent the wheel – Adaptable RAMP toolkit  Consultants not required  No software licensing or subscriptions  Multiple languages (depending on program)  Export data for custom analysis using any statistical analysis package  Additional SMART phone featureswww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Benefits - management Online library of survey forms Collect and aggregate data form multiple areas and partners Ease of creating and changing analyses/reports Efficient reporting and disseminationwww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Benefits - Fieldworkers • Build local capacity for M&E • Standard and familiar mobile phones • No more paper to collect, transport or return • Automated data submission (assuming network)www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Benefits - Quality Assurance  Immediate QA:  Real-time error analysis and field correction  Utilize skip patterns, custom logic and validation  Remote QA:  Enables monitoring of survey team work rate, productivity and quality  Monitor times/location of data collection (time/date data stamps)  Provide feedback remotely  Efficient data management reduces “paper” mistakes  Easier to back-up forms/data  Reduced error of repetitive data entry and re-entry  Easier to change and update formswww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Reality Check!  Not suitable for very long questionnaires  No “magic bullet” –work is still in the details!  Things to improve – i.e. offline form generation  Technology is a moving target – (hardware and software)  Challenges resource development/training  (But also means improvements and reduced costs)www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Questions to Consider  What applications do you see for mobile data collection in the humanitarian sector?  What has worked well?  What hasn’t worked well?www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • www.ifrc.org/ramp Package of field-friendly User Guides: 1. Volume 1: Designing a RAMP survey: technical considerations 2. Volume 2: Implementing a RAMP survey: practical field guide 3. Volume 3: Training a RAMP survey team: guide for trainers Living archive of additional resources:  Example database and STATA files for data cleaning and analysis of a sample malaria survey  Latest up-to-date malaria questionnaires and STATA files for data cleaning and analysis  Country reports and results bulletins, information, useful linkswww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • The following slides are extra and can be referred to if needed, (but unlikely).www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Cost of a IFRC RAMP HH survey for Malaria programming (average) Description Cost (US $)Training (4 or 5 days) including two facilitators 10,623Field survey, including transportation, daily allowances 12,415and accommodationMobile phones, accessories and air time 3,806Survey administration 2,243Total in-country expenditure (US $) US $ 29,087www.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • When might a RAMP survey be suitable? Flexibility Items that can be adjusted Comments Adjust precision ±10%, 5%, 3%, etc. Adjust indicator type (denominator of - Person all ages indicator) including mixtures of indicator - Children <5 years old types - Pregnant women - Households - Schools Adjust number of domains - 1 domain with 30 clusters - 2 domains with 30 clusters to compare statistically - 10 domains with 30 clusters each to compare Adjust overall sample size - 200 to 5000 householdswww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • How is the RAMP method different from MIS/DHS? MIS/DHS RAMPComplex design, uses external consultants Simple design, external consultants notto design survey neededListing of all households is done in all Divides clusters into manageable-sizedclusters; expensive, often taking several segments using standard survey methods;days in each cluster takes <1/2 daySimple random sampling of households Simple random sampling of households(from the cluster list) (from the final segment list)Real-time data cleaning not possible Real-time data cleaning during the surveyReal-time data analysis not possible; results Real-time data analysis and results/drafttake several months report finished within 3 days of last interviewData analysis done by third-party Organization performs analysis, buildingconsultants capacity and maintaining control of datawww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • Mobile applicationRecord field data, evenwithout network coveragewww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.
  • RAMP  Based on standard survey sampling methodology  Web-based platform for survey design, data storage, analysis, reporting and data export.  Field-based data entry through mobile phone application.  Questionnaires downloaded to standard mobile phones  Web-based dataset that can export “real-time” for rapid analysis and reportingwww.ifrc.orgSaving lives, changing minds.