Tools for a country approach

We are working to establish evidence-based, sex and gender-responsive diagnostic tools and systems to help close the diagnostic gap for all people.

Our country approach guides our collaborations with other countries. It builds in considerations of the country’s gender context that could impact diagnostics and assesses how the inclusion of sex and gender considerations in programmatic work can contribute to better diagnostic systems. There are several ways to do this, depending on whether the work to be done in a country is as broad as laboratory strengthening, diagnostic network optimization, national guidelines, national essential diagnostic lists (NEDLs), or a specific disease programme.

The country approach comprises variations on the following key steps and approaches:

  • Preparation for the overall assessment including budget and responsibilities for the gender work; taking a gender lens to all proposals and protocols; ensuring appropriate questions are embedded in surveys; building sex and gender into M&E and reporting.
  • Conduct of a gender and policy report to understand the various policies and regulations that could affect gendered aspects of diagnostic systems.
  • Assessment of epidemiological context can be done generally for overall burden of disease in the country broken down by sex or gender when possible, or a specific disease area. The related diagnostic tools to cover essential needs (e.g. antenatal screening) for the diseases can then be charted and mapped against availability of tests, disaggregated by sex/gender.
  • If there is work to be done on laboratory assessments or diagnostic network optimization, specific questions can be built into assessment tools.

Analysis of all of the above is reported to the relevant stakeholders and suggestions for adaptations are made.