New tool to improve coordination of AIDS technical support
03 October 2008
In order to further improve the coordination
of technical support provided to countries,
UNAIDS and its partners have developed a
new tool in the form of a shared database.
Photo credit: UNAIDS/P.Virot
Many countries require quality and timely technical support to plan, budget, implement and monitor their AIDS programmes effectively and efficiently. While the demand for technical support has increased, the number of providers has also grown dramatically resulting at times in competition, duplication and increased transaction costs for countries using these services.
In order to further improve the coordination of technical support provided to countries, UNAIDS and its partners have developed a new tool in the form of a shared database. This database includes up-to-date information on technical support. So technical support providers and users will be able to know what kind of expertise has been provided to a specific country, by whom and with what results, thus optimizing resources and achieving greater coordination in providing technical support to national AIDS efforts.
The CoATS – Coordinating AIDS Technical Support database – a practical tool for countries to monitor technical support aims to:
- Facilitate access by country partners to timely and quality assured technical support.
- Encourage coordination of technical support between providers and users with increased accountability for results.
- Facilitate collaboration and exchange of information on technical support activities at global, regional and country level
CoATS has been established as a web-portal with data on technical support provided by a range of partners including UNAIDS and its Cosponsors UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF, World Bank and WHO as well as, USAID/PEPFAR, the Global Fund, GTZ, CSAT, ICTC and the International AIDS Alliance. CoATS is currently being piloted at the country level and UNAIDS will support ten countries in using the CoATS system to monitor their technical support plans. Following a consolidation phase, CoATS will be rolled out more widely.
The data stored in the database can be
searched by country, provider, activity
type, recipient, funder, status and start
and end dates.
The data stored in the database can be searched by country, provider, activity type, recipient, funder, status and start and end dates. The resulting information can then be generated as reports based on searches and exported as PDF documents or as Excel spreadsheets. CoATS will also have a database of different tools and reports from technical support missions that will enable better sharing of information and reduce duplication of efforts.
CoATS has at its heart the Principles of Technical Support developed by the Global Implementation Support Team (GIST) whose mandate is to coordinate technical support to address implementation bottlenecks, disseminate lessons learnt and identify good practices.
“This is an important area of work for UNAIDS. CoATS facilitates greater accountability and country ownership of technical support by providing a clear picture of activities. The database will indicate who is asking for the support, who is paying for it, who is supplying it and who is the consultant carrying it out and when”, said Tim Martineau, UNAIDS Director for Technical and Operational Support Department. “UNAIDS is pleased to be an active member of the GIST and to improving the coordination of technical support”, he added.