Health Systems Strengthening

Mother watches over her baby whilst she sleeps

Access to good quality sexual, reproductive, maternal and newborn health services is critical for the health and wellbeing of women and their families, and to continue to reduce maternal and newborn mortality and morbidity. Providing high-quality healthcare requires a well-functioning health system, with an adequate and well-trained workforce.

CMNH has a wealth of expertise and experience in evaluating programmes focusing on maternal, neonatal and child health (MNCH): our evaluation work is designed in line with the OECD-DAC criteria for international development and respects the Standards for Evaluation as defined by the United Nations Evaluation Group.

We offer unique expertise in utilising the rigorous discipline of both quantitative and qualitative research methodology to develop and apply monitoring and evaluation (M&E) frameworks to assess the impact, relevance, effectiveness, efficiency and sustainability of large-scale programmes. CMNH has extensive experience assessing both demand for and supply of healthcare using mixed research methods in ‘real life’ field settings in low- and middle-income countries. Research findings are used to provide recommendations on how to best translate evidence into practice at national and international level.

We firmly believe that sustainable changes cannot happen without the governments’ leadership and commitment. Therefore, in evaluating programs, we engage with governments, policy makers and civil society organisations and we support them in prioritising their health needs.

Recent examples of our evaluation work to strengthen health systems:

In 2018, CMNH conducted the independent evaluation of the Health Development Fund (HDF) in Zimbabwe. The HDF is a multi-donor pooled fund designed to improve reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health (RMNCH+A) and nutrition in Zimbabwe between 2016 and 2020. The final review of the report stated: “The strong participatory approach used throughout the evaluation and the use of an evaluation technical committee composed of members from the Fund's steering committee is a great way to ensure that the evaluation design and findings respond to the needs of the users. This increases ownership of the evaluation and maximises the likeliness that recommendations will be used.”

In early 2018, CMNH also supported UNICEF Kyrgyzstan to design a monitoring and evaluation framework for a UNICEF-supported programme aimed at improving perinatal health in the country.

In 2019, the UNICEF Regional Office of South Asia has commissioned CMNH to evaluate policies and support systems for national CHW programmes in eight South Asia countries: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.