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Background

The Lives Saved Tool (LiST), developed by the Institute for International Programs at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and funded by thefon Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is a model that estimates the impact of scaling up health and nutrition interventions on maternal, newborn, and child health, and stillbirths. LiST is a part of Spectrum, a software package maintained by Avenir Health. The model been used for over 10 years and is regularly updated to incorporate the latest evidence from the scientific literature and household survey data. 

Download a two-page overview of LiST.

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Methodology

 The LiST module produces estimates of global health impact by modeling outcomes such as:

  • Neonatal and child mortality

  • Maternal mortality

  • Stillbirths

  • Birth outcomes (preterm, small-for-gestational-age)

  • Nutrition outcomes (stunting, wasting, anemia)

The framework of LiST is based upon:

  • Demography details, either read directly from demographic projections produced by the United Nations Population Division or derived from national or subnational demographic estimates

  • Cause of death information for neonates, children under five, mothers, and stillbirths, from country-specific WHO profiles or estimated by using local data sources

  • Coverage levels for a variety of key health interventions that affect child and maternal mortality

  • Health status indicators for a national or subnational setting

  • Effectiveness estimates for neonatal, child, and maternal interventions from the latest scientific reviews and literature

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LIST in SPECTRUM

The Lives Saved Tool (LiST) is part of Spectrum, a software which contains a suite of modules. Linkages between LiST and other analytic tools allow users to modify aspects including demography, HIV/AIDS programming, and family planning determinants. 

The following modules are currently included in Spectrum and can be used by LiST:

  • DemProj (provides demography information - automatically selected and always necessary to run LiST

  • AIM (estimates the impact of HIV/AIDS interventions – automatically selected in countries with a high HIV/AIDS prevalence)

  • LiST Lives Saved Tool (Maternal, newborn and child health and nutrition intervention impact)

  • FamPlan (estimates the impact of family planning interventions)

To run LiST, users need to download and install Spectrum here. They can then select LiST as a module to be activated for use in the software.  

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Interventions and data sources in LiST

The full list of data sources, assumptions, and citations from the scientific literature are available in the Help documentation for LiST. This can be accessed as a PDF on the Training page of our website or by clicking the “Help” button inside the software.

Most data sources are updated on an annual basis, or as frequently as nationally representative household survey data for a given country is made available. The research literature is reviewed frequently to assure all effectiveness assumptions in the software are up-to-date.

The “Data Quality in LiST” webinar provides an overview of data sources and related issues.

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