A Gis Perspective for Local Level Planning and Decision-Making: The Case of Spatial Data Integration, Health and Sanitation in the Ga District of Ghana

ABSTRACT

The devolution of political administration, planning and the decision-making process from over burdened central governments to the local level has been borne out of one basic fact - that community participation in governance, planning and decision-making will make the process of development more self-sustaining. The assumption being that bringing policy decisions that reflect local conditions closer to the people will lead to a fuller participation in programmes that will bring about improvement in the well-being of the people. This has been the basic idea behind Ghana’s decentralization policy and the District Assembly concept. The concept has led to the creation of basic units of government called the District Assemblies. Even though the framework for pursuing the decentralisation policy and the planning process have been laid down, the tools or techniques to enhance holistic planning have been inadequate, especially for the integration of sets of information held within the various functional agencies in the District Assemblies. The fact is that many of the questions facing planners, policy makers, administrators and researchers, among others, are inherently geographical and spatial analysis and mapping are emerging as vital tools for providing answers to such questions. The District Assemblies have not only been seen as the basic units of government, but understandably the ideal and most manageable units for data acquisition and processing. For holistic plan development and for a more informed decision-making, what is required for the integration of data and making it available in forms that are easily comprehaisible is a GIS. This study considered the application of GIS as a tool for the integration of disparate data sets in the district departments and proposed the elements of a prototype GIS for planning at the district level. It is an attempt to use the integration concept to provide answers to some fundamental planning and policy issues in the health sector. The study is a case type and centered on the Ga District, one of the five districts that make up the Greater Accra Region. Like all other District Assemblies in Ghana, it carries out its administrative, political, planning and decision-making functions within the framework of the laws that established the District Assemblies and the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC). However, planning has been hampered by several factors, basic among which is the lack of a mechanism for integrating data held within the district departments. The study considered the use of GIS as a tool to facilitate the integration of spatial data held within 15 departments in the district. It also proposed the type of approach required for multidatabase design in the context of the district and for GIS interoperability. The study proposed a scheme, which shows, some of the basic elements for a prototype district GIS. The study showed through the use of the overlay method of analysis that integrating diseases data with environmental data could help provide clues to the causes of major diseases in the Ga District. It has been shown that in many cases the high incidence of the diseases was associated with poor sanitation practices, solid waste disposal and household water supply sources. The technology offers a good way of studying the geographical aspects of diseases and thus contributing to both educational intervention and planning. It also showed the added value of GIS in ascertaining health care services coverage. Here the study was able to demonstrate the additional number of health care facilities and services required to bring coverage closer to the communities. The study recommends GIS as an instrument that can be used to device quick, reliable and scientifically valid methods of rapid assessment and utilization for planning, monitoring and evaluation of programmes at the district level. It will be necessary for the district assemblies to be equipped with the basic facilities for prototype GISs that will enhance the execution of their holistic plans. The GIS facility will not only facilitate spatial data capture, storage, manipulation, analysis and update but also serve as a store of data to meet the needs of any particular department. While saving costs in data collection and avoiding the duplication of efforts, it will also pave the way for uniformity in modes of data representation, scales, standards, updates and data quality levels to allow for interoperability. The present study was based on one district out of the 110 in the whole country. Future studies may require that more districts are studied in terms of their departmental data acquisition and processing operations for plan development. This will set the pace for a national consensus and capacity building for spatial data acquisition. processing standards setting and quality levels among others. It also views the inclusion of geodemographic data or household surveys in the investigation of explanatory causes of diseases as relevant in future studies.

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APA

KOFIE, R (2021). A Gis Perspective for Local Level Planning and Decision-Making: The Case of Spatial Data Integration, Health and Sanitation in the Ga District of Ghana. Afribary. Retrieved from https://afribary.com/works/a-gis-perspective-for-local-level-planning-and-decision-making-the-case-of-spatial-data-integration-health-and-sanitation-in-the-ga-district-of-ghana

MLA 8th

KOFIE, RICHARD "A Gis Perspective for Local Level Planning and Decision-Making: The Case of Spatial Data Integration, Health and Sanitation in the Ga District of Ghana" Afribary. Afribary, 11 Apr. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/a-gis-perspective-for-local-level-planning-and-decision-making-the-case-of-spatial-data-integration-health-and-sanitation-in-the-ga-district-of-ghana. Accessed 15 Jul. 2024.

MLA7

KOFIE, RICHARD . "A Gis Perspective for Local Level Planning and Decision-Making: The Case of Spatial Data Integration, Health and Sanitation in the Ga District of Ghana". Afribary, Afribary, 11 Apr. 2021. Web. 15 Jul. 2024. < https://afribary.com/works/a-gis-perspective-for-local-level-planning-and-decision-making-the-case-of-spatial-data-integration-health-and-sanitation-in-the-ga-district-of-ghana >.

Chicago

KOFIE, RICHARD . "A Gis Perspective for Local Level Planning and Decision-Making: The Case of Spatial Data Integration, Health and Sanitation in the Ga District of Ghana" Afribary (2021). Accessed July 15, 2024. https://afribary.com/works/a-gis-perspective-for-local-level-planning-and-decision-making-the-case-of-spatial-data-integration-health-and-sanitation-in-the-ga-district-of-ghana

Document Details
RICHARD Y. KOFIE Field: Geography Type: Thesis 213 PAGES (129408 WORDS) (pdf)