Assessment of policy makers’ individual and organizational capacity to acquire, assess, adapt and apply research evidence for maternal and child health policy making in Nigeria: a cross-sectional quantitative survey
Background: Throughout the world, there is increasing awareness and acknowledgement of the value of research evidence in the development of effective health policy and in quality health care practice and administration. Among the major challenges associated with the lack of uptake of research evidence into policy and practice in Nigeria is the capacity constraints of policymakers to use research evidence in policy making.
Objective: To assess the capacity of maternal and child health policy makers to acquire, access, adapt and apply available research evidence.
Methods: This cross-sectional quantitative survey was conducted at a national maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) stakeholders’ engagement event. An evidence to policy self-assessment questionnaire was used to assess the capacity of forty MNCH policy makers to acquire, assess, adapt and apply research evidence for policy making.
Results: Low mean ratings were observed ranging from 2.68-3.53 on a scale of 5 for knowledge about initiating/conducting research and capacity to assess authenticity, validity, reliability, relevance and applicability of research evidence and for organizational capacity for promoting and using of research for policy making.
Conclusion: There is need to institute policy makers’ capacity development programmes to improve evidence-informed policymaking.
Keywords: Policy maker; research; evidence; capacity; Nigeria
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