Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can you help me understand how to use the Lives Saved Tool?

A: There are many resources on our website that explain how to use LiST available here. We also hold occasional training sessions. Please join our mailing list to get notified as they become available.


Q: What types of interventions can be modeled in LiST?

A:  The interventions in LiST impact the major causes of neonatal, under-five, and maternal mortality and nutrition outcomes in low and middle income countries. Users can model the impact of family planning and HIV/AIDS interventions through other modules in the Spectrum (FamPlan and AIM, respectively). At this time, it is not possible to use LiST to model intervention impact on chronic diseases, neglected tropical diseases, injuries, and adolescent health.

Q: How can I figure out the definition of an intervention and its effectiveness source?

 A: All of the information about the effectiveness can be found in the Help menu. While in the coverage tab, click on the “Help” button in the right hand corner. This menu documents the intervention definition, effectiveness source, and any other notes.


Q: Can LiST be used in high-income countries?  

A: No. The Lives Saved Tool is not appropriate to use in high-income settings.


Q: Where do the inputs in LiST come from?

A: Coverage comes from nationally representative household surveys including the Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) and Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS). Mortality rates come from the UN Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation (UN-IGME) and World Health Organization, UNICEF, United Nations Population Fund and The World Bank for maternal. Cause of death estimates are prepared by the WHO Maternal and Child Epidemiology Estimation (MCEE) group.

Q: How can I tell where a particular number in the LiST module comes from?

A: Right clicking on a number in the LiST module and clicking on “Data source” will allow the user to view its data source.

 Q: Can LiST be used to model districts, states, etc?

A: Please watch this video to learn more about subnational modeling. The LiST Subnational Wizard has stunting, wasting, and intervention coverage data available for select geographic regions. Data availability varies by DHS/MICS stratification. For example, the 2010 MICS for Afghanistan was sampled at the regional level while the 2015 DHS was sampled at the provincial level, which is a sublevel of the regions in Afghanistan

Q: How can I change an intervention’s effectiveness?
A: Users can change effectiveness by clicking on the “effectiveness” tab while in the LiST module.

Q: How do I add an intervention that is not currently in LiST?

A: Please see this presentation.


Q: Can I use a Mac?

A: Spectrum is designed to run on a Windows PC. Please see instructions here for using alternative operating systems on a Mac.

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