POPULATION SERVICES INTERNATIONAL (PSI)
REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS
FOR AN INDEPENDENT EVALUATION OF THE OTSS+ APPROACH TO QUALITY ASSURANCE OF SERVICE DELIVERY
PART 2: RFP SCOPE OF WORK
Independent Evaluation of the OTSS+ Approach to Quality Assurance of Service Delivery
PSI is a leading global health organization with programs targeting malaria, child survival, HIV and reproductive health. Working in partnership within the public and private sectors, and harnessing the power of the markets, PSI provides life-saving products, clinical services and behavior change communications that empower the world's most vulnerable populations to lead healthier lives. PSI's core values are a belief in markets and market mechanisms to contribute to sustained improvements in the lives of the poor; results and a strong focus on measurement; speed and efficiency with a predisposition to action and an aversion to bureaucracy; decentralization and empowering our staff at the local level; and a long-term commitment to the people we serve. PSI has programs in 67 countries. For more information, please visit www.psi.org
The US President’s Malaria Initiative Impact Malaria Project (IM) is PMI’s flagship global malaria service delivery project, helping to improve the quality and increase the delivery of malaria prevention, diagnosis, and treatment services in up to 27 countries around the world. IM is a USAID contract hosted and led by PSI as the prime contractor. PMI Impact Malaria works with national malaria control programs to help tackle these challenges by:
The IM team is a results-focused, multidisciplinary and multicultural team, based out of Washington DC, working through PSI country offices as well as through our partners Jhpiego, MCDI and UCSF.
The Outreach Training and Supportive Supervision Plus (OTSS+) Approach
IM supports, as one of its primary interventions, the OTSS+ approach, which was originally developed through the PMI Improving Malaria Diagnosis Project (IMaD) as a quality assurance (QA) approach for strengthening laboratory diagnosis. The approach builds on lessons from adult learning, de-emphasizing classroom training and instead prioritizing regular, structured, competency-based supervision, coupled with on-the-job training, troubleshooting, and real-time feedback. The OTSS approach was expanded to provide similar QA support for outpatient malaria case management services during the follow-on MalariaCare Project. A digital tool allowing supervision data to be collected on tablets was introduced during the MalariaCare Project to streamline data entry, analysis, and feedback.
IM has built on the tools and lessons learned from its two predecessor projects, adding modules to assess the quality of severe malaria management and prevention of malaria in pregnancy (MIP). IM also has moved to expand digital data collection, using an enhanced version of the digital OTSS tool, and exploited the capacity of digital data systems to provide immediate analysis and feedback on performance to health workers in targeted facilities. Digital reporting also enables real-time uploading of data into IM’s Data Hub, enabling more rapid data compiling and analysis, real-time updating of country and project dashboards, and facilitates cross-country analyses. With these innovations, IM has renamed this strengthened approach as OTSS+.
Figure 1. IM-supported countries conducting OTSS+
Both the IMaD and MalariaCare Projects produced publications that documented evidence of improved competency and performance on diagnostic testing and clinical case management for malaria. IMaD commissioned an assessment of the OTSS approach on laboratory performance (Keating, et al, Trans Royal Soc Trop Med Hyg, Oct 2014), which also demonstrated good competence in malaria microscopy in supported facilities. The MalariaCare Project produced a series of reports in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene on various aspects of its quality assurance activities (Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2019 Apr;100(4)).
After more than a decade of support for the OTSS approach, and with a broadened package of support that includes clinical and diagnostic services and expansion to include prevention of malaria in pregnancy, an independent evaluation to validate the effectiveness of the OTSS+ approach, to document lessons learned and best practices, and to identify areas for improvement and potential streamlining would be an important contribution to global efforts to achieve universal access to high-quality malaria service delivery.
A recent series of workshops outlined a Learning Agenda for IM, including a series of questions and topics that related to the OTSS+ approach:
Scope of Activities:
IM is seeking a consultant, consulting team, or organization to design and implement an independent evaluation of the OTSS+ approach. The objectives of this evaluation are:
The evaluation should include at least these three components:
The evaluation should include in-depth evaluations in four countries, which will be determined at a stakeholder’s workshop after the contract is awarded. For the proposal and budget preparation, please use the following countries: Ghana, Niger, Kenya, and Zambia. It is likely that some, but not all of these countries will be included as part of the in-depth evaluation.
Bidders may also propose additional evaluation components if they can be conducted within the available budget.
Impact Malaria will facilitate access to available documentation and OTSS+ data, and assist with identification and linkages with key informants.
The selected applicant will:
It is anticipated that this evaluation will take approximately six months from completion of the subcontract until submission of the draft evaluation report, plus an additional three months for finalization of the report and production of a draft manuscript for publication.