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Management Survey Tool Changing the way we collect data in health surveys. Presented by Jenny Cervinskas and Bong Duke On behalf of the MST team for the Cross River State, Nigeria rollout July 6, 2011. Partners. Roll Back Malaria (RBM)/MOH Nigerian Red Cross National Society

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management survey tool changing the way we collect data in health surveys

Management Survey ToolChanging the way we collect data in health surveys

Presented by Jenny Cervinskas

and Bong Duke

On behalf of the MST team for the Cross River State, Nigeria rollout

July 6, 2011

  • Roll Back Malaria (RBM)/MOH
  • Nigerian Red Cross National Society
  • IFRC (International Federation of Red Cross Red Crescent Societies)
  • WHO


    • Purpose and key features
    • How it works
    • How much it costs
    • Benefits of the tool
  • MST rollout in Cross River State

③ What’s next?

purpose of the management survey tool mst
Purpose of the Management Survey Tool (MST)
  • Provide a survey methodology in which Red Cross societies, government and other partners can:
    • conduct health surveys at reduced cost
    • with limited external technical assistance
    • achieve high standards of survey design and quality
  • MST aims to simplify and improve the timeliness of the entire data collection cycle
  • To use mobile phones and a web-based, freely accessible software domain as a data collection technique to conduct health surveys
rapid spread technology of cellphones opens up new possibilities
Rapid spread & technology of cellphones opens up new possibilities

What can you do with a phone?

The same things you can do with any other computer.









traditional paper and pencil questionnaire
Traditional Paper and Pencil Questionnaire

The time and costs of data collection can be substantially reduced if mobile phone data collection is used in place of the traditional paper and pencil method that has been the best practice in health surveys for decades

key features of the mst
Key Features of the MST
  • Has an accompanying training manual, technical manual, and tools adaptable to local settings
  • Allows for:
    • web based questionnaire design using EpiSurveyor
    • questionnaire forms to be uploaded to standard mobile phones
    • data collection using low cost, familiar and widely available mobile phones (e.g. Nokia, Samsung)
  • Data can be exported to Microsoft Excel, as a text file, and in Mdb format
  • Enables rapid analysis and reporting of survey results
With the MST you can transform a standard mobile phone into an innovative evaluation or research tool

Conduct surveys and capture data from

a standard mobile phone

Manage surveys, people and data from your web-based server

Survey Bulletin within 24 hours

Survey Report within 72 hours

web based server
Web Based Server
  • Create a free account using Datadyne’sEpiSurveyor software
  • Access your web based server from a web browser anywhere in the world
  • Design your questionnaire with embedded logic and in multiple languages
  • Monitor, manage and communicate with your team
  • Export data and analyze results in real-time.
why use mobile phones to collect data
Why use mobile phones to collect data?
  • Real-time data entry on cell phones
  • Daily upload of data from cell phone over 2G cell network to internet database
  • Real-time data monitoring and data quality checks
  • Real-time data cleaning
  • Real-time data analysis
  • Rapid production of survey results within hours or days of last interview
stakeholder benefits
Stakeholder benefits

Decision Makers

  • No software licensing or subscriptions
  • Reduces environmental impact
  • Scalable solution for teams and studies of varying sizes
  • Get data and information rapidly for decision-making and planning


  • Incorporate a multitude of question types with custom logic and validation
  • Manage and upload surveys in multiple languages
  • Monitor staff work rate, productivity and quality
  • Export data for custom analysis with your favourite statistical analysis package


  • Conduct surveys anywhere, even in areas with no network coverage
  • Use standard and familiar mobile phone
  • No more paper to collect, transport or return
  • Automated submission of data when network reception is available
site identification
Site identification
  • Cross River State, Nigeria
  • 10 of 18 LGAs in CRS
  • LLIN distribution took place January-June 2011
  • MST malaria survey to provide a post-campaign evaluation of the NRC door-to-door LLIN distribution and hang-up campaign
  • Mobile network coverage
mst survey focus malaria
MST survey focus: Malaria

Data collected on key indicators

survey methods sampling
Survey methods: Sampling
  • Standard survey methodology used in an MST survey
  • Multi-stage cluster sampling
    • 1st stage: standard probability-proportional-to-estimated-size (PPES) selection of clusters
      • 2nd stage: selection of households- simple random sampling (SRS) to choose 10 households/cluster
300 households
300 households

30 clusters, 10 households per cluster

survey questionnaires
Survey questionnaires
  • Modeled after the standardized MIS questionnaires
    • Household questionnaire
    • Person roster/Treatment and diagnosis of fever in under-5S
    • Net roster
    • Questionnaire administered in English
red cross volunteers carried out the interviews
Red Cross volunteers carried out the interviews

Six teams: Two interviewers per team

Six team leaders

+Survey Supervisory Support Team

training june 20 24
Training(June 20-24)
  • Content
    • Cellphone basics
    • Questionnaires
    • Informed consent
    • Interview techniques
    • Field procedures
    • Field logistics/reporting
    • Supervisor training
  • Methods

Adapted the MST curriculum and guide

a day s schedule
A day’s schedule
  • Locating the chosen cluster, preparing the sketch map, segmentation and selecting the households to be interviewed
  • Conduct household interviews
  • Team leader/interviewers send data to server
  • Evening briefing (“quality round”)
  • Data cleaning, editing and analysis
real time data editing and cleaning
Real-time data editing and cleaning

Daily data monitoring, editing and cleaning

results high percentage of itns were used last night high itn use especially in children
Results: High percentage of ITNs were used last night. High ITN use, especially in children

* 99% of nets were ITNs & 99% of ITNs were LLINs

treatment diagnosis 5 yo
Treatment & diagnosis, <5 yo

- Denominator for all indicators was % of children <5y with fever in the previous two weeks

so does the mst work
So, does the MST “work”?
  • Field methods followed
  • Daily data monitoring and cleaning accomplished
  • Preliminary survey results bulletin finished within 24 hours
  • Preliminary report finished within 72 hours
  • Provided excellent management information on the key indicators
cellphone based surveys summary points
Cellphone-based Surveys: Summary Points


  • Via your web-based server, responses may be viewed, monitored and exported instantly


  • The removal of paper from the research process reduces the number of points at which error can be introduced


  • Monitor the productivity and quality of work conducted by field staff (GPS, time and date stamp)


  • Do not need network coverage to conduct surveys, responses are stored securely on the mobile phone, thus can reach even the most remote communities


  • Save on survey printing, distribution and collection costs
what s next for ifrc
What’s next? For IFRC…
  • Extract lessons learned from Kenya, Namibia and Nigeria and share for application in other surveys
  • Finalize and disseminate the IFRC MST technical manual and the training manual
  • Continue developing strategies for technical support in order to gradually reduce external support
  • Test the MST in other sectors and disciplines if appropriate
  • Continue searching for innovative ways to collect data in a timely fashion in order to better serve the communities we work in