To improve prevention and treatment of many diseases, new products and interventions require knowledge of their effective implementation and an understanding of their impact through constant monitoring and evaluation.
LSTM’s emphasis on product development alongside translational and policy research with special focus on health systems and capacity strengthening resonates strongly with institutions; governments and their ministries; funding bodies and partner organisations across the globe.
Applied Health Research at LSTM includes a strong focus on taking interventions from regulatory approval through to field implementation.
This encompasses the activities that help develop practical solutions to health needs and rights. It incorporates the spectrum of research that delivers policy-relevant evidence and includes operational, implementation, and health systems research.
It is part of the value chain taking knowledge from Discovery and Translation and moving it into policy and practice. These research domains are required to develop and synthesise a robust body of evidence to help drive policy and practice for health amongst poor and vulnerable populations in the developing world. It requires expertise from a range of disciplines to combine and integrate scientific, technological, economic and social insights.
Co-ordinated by LSTM, this Collaboration brings together individuals and disciplines, across the full range of applied health research encompassing operational, implementation, and health systems research.
Evidence-based health care has undergone a revolution over the last 10 years. The science to synthesize research has developed.
Systematic reviews of reliable research evidence are a requirement for evidence informed policy and practice. They are also required prior to embarking on new research, to build on the existing research base, and avoid duplication and wasting money and resources.
The Cochrane Collaboration has been a central part of developing synthesis methods and the principles of evidence based health care. LSTM, through the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group, is a major contributor to this world wide effort and this theme, "evidence synthesis for global health", is based on 20 years of experience at the forefront of research synthesis with partners worldwide in conducting reliable systematic reviews to inform tropical public health and health systems policymaking.
LSTM is working on issues around health staff performance management; international migration of health professionals; decentralisation and human resource management; reducing geographical mal-distribution of health personnel; the role of HR in policy development and strategies to strengthen the integration of community health workers into the formal health system.
Gender & Health
The Gender and Health Group is a multi-disciplinary group with expertise in gender equity and health research. Its research on gender equity and sexual and reproductive health and rights includes work on maternal health, post abortion care, gender based violence, gendered vulnerability and resilience to HIV and research uptake strategies; work on equity and tuberculosis includes assessing community based approaches to bring services closer to communities to enhance access.
Group members have extensive experience of gender and equity analysis in areas such as national level policy development, clinical research and practice, and health systems development in collaboration with partners in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Strengthening health research capacity in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC) is a recognized way to advance health and development. However, systematic evidence on the effectiveness of different approaches remains limited, as their complexity and diversity make monitoring and evaluation (M&E) difficult.
The Capacity Research Unit uses operational and implementation research techniques to generate high quality robust evidence to aid the design and evaluation of capacity strengthening initiatives for programmes within LSTM and for external agencies.
Health Programme Monitoring and Evaluation
The Monitoring and Evaluation Technical Assistance and Research unit (METRe) focuses on the use and training of innovative and up-to-date data collection and analysis tools which can be used to guide and strengthen health programmes, and to formulate evidence based policy.
As part of CAHRD, LSTM conducts research on effectiveness, efficiency & equity impact of health interventions from community to hospital level. This is to provide economic evidence for social policy, environment health and public health policy, and clinical guidance, including inequalities in the international health field and health technology assessment field.
Data Management and Modelling
LSTM researchers are working to improve cost effectiveness and ease of use of new methods of vector control as well as coordinating efforts on NTD modelling to inform policy.
LSTM is also implementing the Disease Data Management System (DDMS) to monitor and evaluate vector borne disease programmes. The DDMS has modules to support case surveillance, disease outbreak, entomological monitoring, intervention planning and intervention monitoring as well as a form generator to build customized modules.