236949 Leveraging an information management system to address the evaluation and management challenges of a state tobacco control program

Monday, October 31, 2011: 3:10 PM

April Roeseler, BSN, MSPH , California Department of Public Health, California Tobacco Control Program, Sacramento, CA
Arnold "A.J." Johnson Holm, MPH (c) , California Department of Public Health, California Tobacco Control Program, Sacramento, CA
Mary V. Modayil, MSPH, PhD , California Department of Public Health, California Tobacco Control Program, Sacramento, CA
The Patient and Affordable Care Act is anticipated to provide $15 billion in funding for community transformation grants for the purpose of helping communities to reduce health disparities and chronic diseases by promoting healthy living and tackling underlying social and economic causes of poor health. It is evident that these Prevention Funds are the subject of much scrutiny and are vulnerable to redirection. In its two decades of existence, the California Tobacco Control Program (CTCP) experienced similar media scrutiny, interference, and efforts to redirect prevention funding resulting in extraordinary pressure to demonstrate that the funds were used appropriately and that meaningful health outcomes resulted from CTCP efforts. CTCP's statewide and community interventions component posed considerable management and evaluation challenges including a high need for accountability and transparency, variability in local agency capacity, and the sheer volume and diversity of local interventions. This presentation discusses California's successful nine year experience using the Online Tobacco Information System (OTIS) to address these challenges. This information system has implications for federal and state public health efforts funding large numbers of community projects. This presentation will provide information about system design features that enhanced program management such as automated document tracking, e-mail alerts, dash boards, aggregated reports, and search functions. It will discuss features that helped: level the “playing field” among diverse agencies applying for funding, improve the quality of intervention and evaluation plans, and reduce submission errors. Besides program management, information systems like OTIS provide enormous potential to evaluate the effectiveness of specific policy, compliance, or educational outreach interventions. Examples of how California has linked information from OTIS regarding the type, quantity and intensity of tobacco control interventions, project capacity, and performance measures with intermediate community outcomes illustrates the potential capacity for using information systems to evaluate statewide or national effectiveness of community-based interventions.

Learning Areas:
Communication and informatics
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Public health administration or related administration

Learning Objectives:
1. Discuss information management system design and functionality features that provide value to users by facilitating collaboration, standardizing administrative processes, increasing transparency and accountability, promoting quality improvement, and level the "playing field" among applicant agencies with diverse capacities. 2. Describe past experience and potential opportunities to link individual project intervention, budget, and progress data collected through an information system with intermediate community outcome data ( e.g., calls to a quitline, policy enactment, compliance data) in order to evaluate the collective impact of community interventions statewide or nationally. 3. Discuss applicability of California’s Online Tobacco Information System to the implementation of the federal community transformation grants and other large scale community-based grant efforts.

Keywords: Information Systems, Evaluation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I led the development and evaluation of California's Online Tobacco Information system which has been in continous use since 2000.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.