Essential Elements for Step 1: Get Started – Why Plan?
We often don’t think about it, but we all use planning and evaluation in our daily lives. We plan what we will eat for breakfast, what we will wear, what things we have to do, etc. Planning is an essential part of our day. Planning a diabetes program is like planning a trip.
What should be planned out in advance?
- Where we are headed
- Who to bring and what to pack (identifying resources)
- Picking the best route (conducting an assessment)
- Selecting things we will do or activities
- Creating clear goals and objectives to set us on the road to success
- Keeping track of data and results
- Moving forward with lessons learned
What is program planning?
- A structured process to develop, implement, and evaluate a program.
- Process that helps your program provide effective activities and show good results.
What is program evaluation?
- A systematic examination and assessment of a program.
- Using data collected to improve a program, demonstrate accountability, and show outcomes.
Why is planning important for your community?
- Spending time planning your program now will make your work easier in the long-term.
- Program planning will help you implement strong diabetes programs, and will improve your results in the clinic and community setting.
Who needs to do program planning?
- All those who conduct health programs
- Nurses, Doctors, Health Educators, Dietitians, Health Program Specialists, Community Health Representatives, Support Staff, and Others
- All those who make policy for health programs
- Health Department Administrator, Program Managers, Health Directors, and Others
When should you get started?
- Program planning and evaluation begin when the program is just an idea.
How do you get started?
- Start by knowing the history, resources, constraints and expectations of the program.
- Find existing plans or pieces of program plans and evaluation.
- Use the Tool Tips and Checklist to determine what is available to your program.
- Use the Visual Planning Tool (or Road Map) to help you keep track of information and understand how your program will work.
How does the Visual Planning Tool (Road Map) help a diabetes program?
- Identify what resources (inputs) are available and those still needed.
- Choose activities (things the program does) based on assessed needs.
- Identify products (who was served or what was developed).
- Document results or outcomes, both short-term (awareness, knowledge skills) and intermediate (behavior, practice, decisions, policy).
- Document impact or long-term results (social, economic, environmental).