John Snow, Inc., and its nonprofit JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc., (JSI) are public health management consulting and research organizations dedicated to improving the health of individuals and communities throughout the world. Headquartered in Boston, USA and established in 1978, JSI has become a recognized leader in implementing innovative programs in a range of public health areas including HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis (TB), maternal, neonatal and child health (MNCH), reproductive health (RH), family planning, health system strengthening, organizational development, health financing, training, social marketing, supply chain management and policy development.
Through the Universal Immunization through Improving Family Health Services project (UI-FHS) funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, JSI is working to improve the routine immunization system in Ethiopia in over 100 woredas across six regions, with an emphasis on equity and quality. The emphasis of UI-FHS is on operationalizing Ethiopia’s national routine immunization strategy, Reaching Every District/Community (RED/REC), by introducing strengthening elements of Quality Improvement (QI) and Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) performance improvement cycles. The “RED-QI” approach is a process that supports addressing larger priority problems (e.g. persistently high drop-out rates) using small, rapid, doable changes that can quickly be tested and vetted for adoption, adaption or abandonment at local level. Although the focus of UI-FHS is on routine immunization strengthening, the RED-QI process is an approach which can be applied to all family health service interventions.
PDSA cycles are the most common quality improvement tool used for rapid cycle improvement, employing a strategy of testing out and studying hypotheses/ideas for improvement before making changes within a system. While most often used in clinical settings, their use in public health and developing country settings is increasing, but most published studies evaluating PDSA cycles have not taken place in the context of primary health care settings in developing countries. Thus, more research is needed to more clearly understand how PDSA cycles are applied particularly in the context of Ethiopia’s immunization system, and the pathways through which they may help improve health system performance.
The study “Use of PDSA cycles for strengthening routine immunization in Ethiopia” will examine the process of implementing PDSA cycles in select UI-FHS implementation woredas in Ethiopia. JSI/UI-FHS is soliciting this RFP to obtain the services of four (4) data collectors highly skilled in qualitative data collection to complete a series of Key Informant Interviews (KIIs) and Focus Group Discussions (FGDs).
Scope of Work for the Service Provider(s):
The Service Provider(s) will complete the following major activities:
Participate in initial 2-day practical training in Addis Ababa led by the UI-FHS team on qualitative research methods and techniques, followed by 1-day piloting activity in Afar region to test and finalize interview tools
The Service Provider(s) will work in teams of 2 data collectors per team (1 facilitator, 1 note-taker, plus additional support from UI-FHS staff) to complete various data collection activities in Amharic, at Woreda Health Office (WoHO), Health Center (HC), and Health Post (HP) levels:
Total of 8 KIIs and 4 FGDs in Dubti woreda (Afar) – split among 2 teams
Total of 8 KIIs and 4 FGDs in Damboya woreda (SNNPR) – split among 2 teams
Total of 8 KIIs and 4 FGDs in Tahtay Koraro woreda (Tigray) – split among 2 teams
For HP level KIIs/FGDs, the Service Provider(s) will work collaboratively with local language translators
After each KII/FGD is complete, the Service Provider(s) will verbally translate interviews from Amharic to English to UI-FHS staff for transcription
Actively participate in evening “debriefs” to discuss data collection process, identify and resolve issues, and analyze trends
In a typical day of data collection, each Service Provider team of 2 can expect to: complete either 1 FGD or 2 KIIs, work with UI-FHS to complete transcribing of day’s interviews, and participate in daily debrief.
Key deliverables for the Service Provider(s) will include:
Completion of training and piloting
Complete and tape record all scheduled KIIs/FGDs; tape recorders will be provided by JSI
Complete transcriptions of data collection into English (Service Provider(s) must work with UI-FHS to verbally translate; this is to be done on a daily basis)
Participation in daily team debrief during data collection in the woredas, including providing general observations and trends beyond the recorded data
Complete lodging receipts and other required financial documentation
Payment is contingent upon completion of all deliverables; please read the terms and conditions carefully for details regarding deliverables and payment.
It is expected that the Service Provider(s) will possess demonstrable skills in:
Qualitative research data collection
Experience in data management, translation
Knowledge and experience in MNCH (preferably immunization)
Very strong English and Amharic language skills
Ability to clearly understand and speak the local language of the study areas is a plus.