Kliniken &… Institute Heidelberger Institut… Groups & Projects Working Groups Research Morbidity Nouna

Development of a new tool to measure morbidity in Nouna HDSS, Burkina Faso

Principal investigator: Henrike Lietz, doctoral student

Supervision: Rainer Sauerborn, Aurélia Souares

Partners: Centre de Recherche en Santé de Nouna (CRSN), Burkina Faso

Project description:
Reliable and valid health data are needed for the reduction of morbidity, to guide policy interventions and to improve the health status of a population. The health transition, from infectious diseases to chronic diseases, challenges the accurate measurement of morbidity. An inadequate database of the local burden of disease also hinders the understanding of population health and limits opportunities for planning, monitoring and evaluating Public Health interventions, especially in low- and middle- income countries (LMIC´s).
In Nouna, Burkina Faso, a Demographic Surveillance System was implemented in 1992, led by the INDEPTH network. Furthermore, a second instrument called the Household Survey (HHS), designed to capture the burden of disease, was implemented by the Center de Recherche en Sante de Nouna in 2002. A sample of the study population of the DSS was interviewed about their health status a maximum of twice a year. Seasonal variations of diseases and a one-month recall period make it impossible to accurately capture all episodes and durations of disease. The lack of available and reliable health data to accurately measure the true local burden of disease is the basis for this research approach.
The study design is an embedded mixed method approach. After a comprehensive literature review on various tools to measure morbidity population-based, we will develop a new tool to collect health data over a 52 week period. One of the special features will be the integration of all three dimensions of health: disease, illness and sickness. Self-reported health will be supplemented by biological measurements and the use of body maps. Next, we will develop an algorithm for assignment of diagnosis by physicians. Moreover, the tool will be integrated into the HDSS and every sampled household will have the same chance to be interviewed every week. The tool will be implemented concomitant to the old HHS. Afterwards, we will evaluate the collected data regarding validity and cost-effectiveness. Furthermore, we will conduct focus group discussions with representatives of the interviewers and the households to analyse the feasibility and acceptability of the tool.

Henrike Lietz (h.lietz@uni-heidelberg.de)
Aurélia Souares (souares@uni-heidelberg.de)