Holding a National Summit to Improve Health Outcomes through Health and Mapping Sector Collaboration in the Development of National Geospatial Data Infrastructure: The Nigerian Strategy

Ganiyu AGBAJE, Aderemi AZEEZ, Kolawole Azeez OYEDIRAN, James STEWART

Abstract


The use of geographic approaches in improving health outcomes, including the fight against Human immunodeficiency virus infection / acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS), is increasing; however, health ministries, AIDS coordinating agencies, and other social service ministries often lack the capacity to use geospatial data and tools such as geographic information systems (GIS). Health organizations would benefit from building collaborative relationships with national mapping agencies (NMAs), national geospatial data infrastructure (NGDI) coordinating bodies and in-country stakeholders with GIS capacity to enhance decision making for health sector programmes and to create an action plan to help address identified challenges.
One approach for strengthening the NGDI within the nation’s health sector was the two-day Nigeria Health and Mapping Summit of 2011. The summit provided opportunities for stakeholders in the NGDI and health sectors to discuss strategies for sharing geospatial data and building capacity to support national health endeavours.
This paper provides a description of the summit and offers lessons learned on key aspects of the event, including the post-summit communiqué presented to both executive and legislative arms of the government with the intent of improving the NGDI. This paper also discusses progress on health and mapping sector collaboration and coordination since the summit.

Keywords


national geospatial data infrastructure; NGDI; NSDI; Geospatial; GIS health; mapping; stakeholders; collaboration; Nigeria.

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