Sector Wide Approach to Strengthening Health ( SWASTH )

Bihar Technical Assistance Support Team (BTAST)
Government of Bihar initiative supported by Department for International Development, UK

 
 

Knowledge Management Strategy

This knowledge management strategy for SWASTH is designed as a framework for guiding the knowledge collation and dissemination activities of BTAST. With a view to provide an effective knowledge base that can support universal, equitable and integrated health outcomes across communities, this strategy aims to harness the learnings from SWASTH in the areas of health; nutrition; water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH); and gender as a cross-cutting concern.

The reach of and access to essential health care services has remained a challenge for rural poor in Bihar. In this context, a Sector Wide Approach to Strengthening Health (SWASTH) was launched in 2010 as a Government of Bihar (GoB) initiative, supported by the Department for International Development (DFID). This initiative is provided technical support through the Bihar Technical Assistance Support Team (BTAST). Various interventions under the programme are intended to “improve the health and nutritional status of people in Bihar, particularly the poorest of the poor, and thereby accelerate the state’s progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)”. Accordingly, the programme adopts an integrated approach to address health, nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene related challenges in the state. The programme comes to an end in 2016.

The SWASTH initiative has generated a wealth of knowledge and lessons, some of which have been recorded through various programmatic documents during the implementation period and through monitoring, and evaluation work. The process of supporting the SWASTH initiative has also enabled, within BTAST, a rich understanding of the opportunities, successes and challenges of providing technical support to governments. As the programme cycle nears completion, BTAST needs to harness this knowledge and lessons from the SWASTH initiative and convert these into a useful knowledge bank for key stakeholders and audiences. Targeted dissemination of the knowledge products in turn could support the scale-up and sustainability of the interventions supported through SWASTH, beyond the programme period in terms of the key intended outcomes, as well as enable replication of interventions elsewhere.

This knowledge management strategy for SWASTH is designed as a framework for guiding the knowledge collation and dissemination activities of BTAST. With a view to provide an effective knowledge base that can support universal, equitable and integrated health outcomes across communities, this strategy aims to harness the learnings from SWASTH in the areas of health; nutrition; water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH); and gender as a cross-cutting concern. It will contribute towards:

  • Ensuring sustainability of the sector wide approach and convergence model in continuing the work of GoB;
  • Informing and influencing future policy and practice at the state, national and global levels across SWASTH sectors, particularly in other areas which face resource constraints or resource management challenges; and
  • Identifying best practices and success stories as well as challenges to enable adaptation of the programmes and approaches in the 

The key objectives of this strategy are:

  • Enhancing internal knowledge management processes;
  • Providing access to information on work undertaken under the SWASTH initiative;
  • Generating evidence and analyses supporting the adoption of SWASTH;
  • Fostering collaborations and partnerships through consultative processes and knowledge sharing platforms; and
  • Developing materials and undertaking knowledge activities for policy influence and advocacy

The range of stakeholders in the SWASTH knowledge process include DFID, UK; the three departments of GoB that are primary stakeholders in the SWASTH initiative; BTAST and the consortium partners that manage BTAST; other external health, nutrition, and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector professionals, and knowledge management and research organisations working with BTAST; other state governments; and policymakers at the national and international level.