gms | German Medical Science

MAINZ//2011: 56. GMDS-Jahrestagung und 6. DGEpi-Jahrestagung

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Medizinische Informatik, Biometrie und Epidemiologie e. V.
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Epidemiologie e. V.

26. - 29.09.2011 in Mainz

Health Data Bases for Bosnia and Herzegovina – a special Challenge

Meeting Abstract

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  • Doris Bardehle - Universität Bielefeld, Bielefeld
  • Srdjan Stakic - AdvancedSystemsGuild, Belgrad

Mainz//2011. 56. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Medizinische Informatik, Biometrie und Epidemiologie (gmds), 6. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Epidemiologie (DGEpi). Mainz, 26.-29.09.2011. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2011. Doc11gmds298

doi: 10.3205/11gmds298, urn:nbn:de:0183-11gmds2983

Published: September 20, 2011

© 2011 Bardehle et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Background: In Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) there exist two Entities (Federation and Republic of Srpska) which have substantial autonomy. In 2000 the Brcko District was added as autonomous structure. Federation is divided into 10 semi-autonomous Cantons. Republic of Srpska has a centralized structure with 7 Public health branch offices. Historically they all have the same system origin, but over the last 15 years the entities have developed particularities of their public health system. The state level of BiH has less authority and a Ministry of Health does not exist. The functionality of the system for health monitoring and disease surveillance is improving and within the EU project “Strengthening Public Health Institutes in Bosnia and Herzegovina”. The collection of data, indicators and the monitoring process in accordance with international standards started in 2010.

Methods: Two working groups, one focusing on strengthening the „Public Health Information System“ with 16 members, representing all administrative levels, and the other focusing on „ Information and Communication Technology” with 9 members, analyzed the actual situation and compared the data quality (particularly the availability) for 200 indicators for the Health for All Database of the WHO (HFA-DB – country data request). They found out, that 57 or even more data and/or indicators would be available in the two Entities and the District of the country, and some more indicators could be calculated, if some data holder would deliver data or if there would be available tools for calculating standardized rates, such as SDR, etc. During a piloting phase the availability, comparability and quality of data should be checked and after this procedure decisions should be made about the further steps. The database with portal solutions is under development introducing a standardized information system flexible enough to comply with administrative specifics of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Results: Piloting took place on 6 locations (Entities, Cantons and Branch offices) and was connected with a training module. 19 indicators could be collected, but there are methodological problems in the comparability. Private capacities of the health sector are not yet collected. The underestimation concerns the number of hospital beds, physicians, and consultations. Further 60 indicators will be collected and stored in 2011.

Discussion and conclusions: This database should solve two tasks: First to start the delivery of health data of good quality to international organizations and second to use selected key indicators for health reporting and health policy at all levels of the country.


European Union. IPA Programme 2007 for Bosnia and Herzegovina: Strenthening Public Health Institutes in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
EuropeAid/ 126863/C/SER/BA. The project is implemented by the consortium EPOS Health Management / ICON-Institute Public Sector