Journal of Biosocial Science

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ASSESSING POPULATION DYNAMICS IN A RURAL AFRICAN SOCIETY: THE NAVRONGO DEMOGRAPHIC SURVEILLANCE SYSTEM


FRED N.  BINKA a1, PIERRE  NGOM a1, JAMES F.  PHILLIPS a2, KUBAJE  ADAZU a1 and BRUCE B.  MacLEOD a3
a1 Navrongo Health Research Centre, Ministry of Health, Navrongo, Upper East Region, Ghana
a2 Policy Research Division, Population Council, New York, NY, USA
a3 Department of Computer Science, University of Southern Maine, Portland, Maine, USA

Abstract

In 1993, the Navrongo Health Research Centre launched a new demographic research system for monitoring the impact of health service interventions in a rural district of northern Ghana. The Navrongo Demographic Surveillance System uses automated software generation procedures that greatly simplify the preparation of complex database management systems. This paper reviews the Navrongo model for data collection, as well as features of the Navrongo system that have led to its replication in other health research projects requiring individual-level longitudinal demographic data. Demographic research results for the first 2 years of system operation are indicative of a pretransitional rural society with high fertility, exceedingly high mortality risks, and pronounced seasonal out-migration.