Exploring the Application of Geographic Information System in Health Organizations Working on HIV/AIDS Prevention Programs in Ethiopia.

No Thumbnail Available



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


Addis Abeba University


Background: Understanding issues ranging from medical epidemiology to healthcare access requires a comprehensive understanding of their geography. In health organizations, GIS provides powerful tools for geographic and spatial analysis, and it allows visualizing data that may have gone unnoticed in spreadsheets, charts, and other reports. Despite the availability of a number of functionalities of GIS technologies with convenient cost, their applications to the health sector in preventing HIV/AIDS is not explored. Objectives: To assess the extent of GIS applications and identify barriers to its adoption, diffusion and utilization in HIV/AIDS prevention programs. Methods: Organization based survey was carried out in Addis Ababa between March and May; 2010.The study participants are organizations working on HIV/AIDS programs at national level. The study employed quantitative and qualitative methods. The data are entered, cleaned and analyzed using SPSS version15 statistical software. Result- Current GIS use among organizations working on HIV/AIDS prevention programs, 18(26.9%) are using GIS technology for program planning and management. Lack of GIS awareness (42.9%), GIS skill (18.4%)and clear GIS strategy (16.3%) are major barriers to the adoption and utilization of GIS among organizations included in the study. Lack of GIS skill (OR=0.07, 95 % CI (0.01, 0.71)) and awareness on GIS use (OR= 0.15, 95% CI (0.04, 0.48)) found to have associations with the current use of GIS in an organization. Conclusion- The study discovers that the uptake of GIS technology in the HIV/AIDS prevention programs is very low. The main reasons identified are Lack of GIS awareness, skill, strategy and poor data sharing experience among organizations. To improve the adoption and use of GIS in the health sector, I recommend organizations to create GIS awareness, develop GIS skill and enhance data sharing with and within the health sector, and investigate further the adoption and use of GIS technology in the health sector in general.



Geographic Information System,Health Organizations,HIV/AIDS