Background: Little is known about the accuracy of facility-based birth registry data for routine monitoring of birth outcomes. This report details the results of a data quality strengthening intervention aimed at improving completeness of birth registry data in Kenya and Uganda, as part of a package of interventions in an implementation science trial under the East Africa Preterm Birth Initiative.
Methods: The intervention aimed to improve completeness of key intrapartum and post-partum data, including gestational age, birthweight, and newborn outcomes. We conducted data strengthening activities in 23 facilities in Uganda and Kenya. To test the effects of these interventions on completion of key variables, we compared completion rates at various time points.
Results: In Uganda, the completion rate of all four fields of interest increased by 13% (95% CI: 10, 17) with the introduction of data quality training and mentoring. Documentation of the status of infant at discharge and gestational age increased by 12% (95% CI: 9, 14) and 22.3% (95% CI: 19, 17), respectively; while that of birthweight had a marginal increase of 3.2% (95% CI: 1, 5) and Apgar at 1 minute showed no significant change. In Kenya, there was no significant change in completion for most fields.
Conclusion: This study suggests that the data strengthening campaign had mixed effects on completion of facility-based maternity register fields and may be country specific. Given emerging international priorities around maternal and neonatal health, utilizing facility-based routine data sources will be key to ensuring sustainable monitoring and evaluation of interventions and outcomes.