We’re assessing our progress in improving health

As resources for tackling HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and other global health challenges have grown, so has the need for monitoring and evaluation (M&E) to measure the impact of interventions. Effective M&E is essential to:

  • Provide funders with evidence that their investments are improving programs and health.
  • Compare cost-effectiveness of interventions.
  • Allocate resources most effectively.

At PATH, we are working to identify and track indicators to assess our performance in advancing health technologies, strengthening systems, and encouraging healthy behaviors. Over time, our M&E efforts help us:

  • Link PATH’s work to specific improvements in health.
  • Boost the effectiveness of our programs.
Below, you’ll find a summary of our efforts to measure impact.

Strategic indicators

PATH has evaluated the success of individual projects for many years—for example, you can read more about our work and impact with the Japanese Encephalitis Project, the Meningitis Vaccine Project, and the Infant & Young Child Nutrition Project. To get a fuller picture of the performance of our organization as a whole over time, we have developed a set of cross-program indicators and organizational effectiveness indicators—measurable steps toward interventions that improve health. Our indicators include:

  • Quantity and movement of products and technologies through PATH’s development pipeline.
  • Number of products licensed, registered, or prequalified.
  • Number of new or expanded geographic areas where PATH works.
  • Number of health workers trained.
  • Number of beneficiaries served by PATH projects (disaggregated by projects reaching a million or more).
  • Number of projects funded with the potential of reaching 10 million or more beneficiaries in five years.
  • Number of global or national advisory or decision-making bodies that make recommendations based on evidence generated by PATH’s work.
  • Number and type of interventions piloted in a developing-country context with PATH support.
  • Number and type of projects rigorously measuring changes in health impact, use, and coverage.
  • Number of policies, strategies, and guidelines changed that improve widespread access to health intervention.
  • Number of efforts to mobilize global, national, and donor resources to scale up interventions.

Some 2011 results

After collecting data on indicators, PATH project teams use an online tool to enter results, which are aggregated by phase of development. A team developing a malaria vaccine, for example, reports completion of clinical trials with children in Mozambique. This result is aggregated with data from other teams conducting clinical trials of other products.

Top-level 2011 findings include the following:

  • PATH had 199 technologies and products in our development pipeline in 2011. Fifty-one products moved forward one or more phases in the pipeline. Six products were registered, three were licensed, and two were prequalified by the World Health Organization.
  • PATH had activities in 68 developing countries. We trained more than 91,000 people in 2011 and worked on 101 policies, strategies, and guidelines. At the global level, eight guidelines and one strategy supported by PATH’s work were approved by global decision-making bodies. At the national level, 36 policies, strategies, and guidelines supported by PATH’s work were approved.
  • More than 74.5 million people benefitted from PATH’s work. More than $100 million in funding was mobilized to scale up PATH-championed interventions.
  • PATH was awarded 83 grants valued at nearly $160 million.

Using data to accelerate impact

In the short term, we are using the results of our work in M&E to analyze PATH’s intervention strategies. Over time, we’ll use the data to better understand and accelerate the impact of our projects by:

  • Linking our work to specific improvements in access to health products and technologies.
  • Informing PATH’s investments in areas with potential to accelerate the use of new or underused technologies.
  • Identifying areas where our programs might work together effectively.
  • Capturing best practices that we can share and scale up.

Focus on good stewardship of funds

PATH’s M&E efforts align with a larger push by the global health community to improve transparency, accountability, and stewardship of the funds entrusted to us. Sustaining the high level of funding we need to meet the world’s greatest health challenges depends on how well we can measure impact and communicate the results to those who support us.