Since 2003, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has been a committed partner by providing the core funds needed to support the development and ongoing expansion of the Lives Saved Tool. Through a series of consecutive grants beginning with a Child Health Reference Epidemiology Group (CHERG) sub-award, the Foundation’s investment has supported the central operational costs for research, programming, and implementation to maintain the structure of the model. Current funding (2017-2020), provided as part of the IMPROVE project, “to improve evidence, estimates, and programming for maternal, newborn, and child health and nutrition,” supports revisions to the platform which are required as the evidence base for global health evolves. Expansion into new outcomes and topic areas remains ongoing through collaboration and consultation with technical experts to refine the model for strategic planning, program evaluation and advocacy applications .
Under the Global Affairs Canada-funded Real Accountability: Data Analysis for Results (RADAR) project whose ultimate outcome is the increased use of high quality, complete, and relevant data for reporting and decision-making on Canadian maternal, newborn and child health investments, LiST is used as one of the six project tools which each tackle different aspects of achieving better project and program evaluation in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). LiST is used in this context to help project and program planners make evidence-based decisions during their project design phase, over the course of the project, and to estimate the final impact of their project when doing project evaluation.
Specific objectives include the development of an updated sub-national wizard and database, to allow project and program planners to model mortality and nutrition outcomes at their specific sub-national level. We are also working towards updating the LiST Costing module to allow for results based on most recent available data. A more user-friendly online platform for LiST is being developed to reduce the training barrier and to increase accessibility and tool uptake among project and program planners. The development of more accessible training materials in French and English is also being supported by Global Affairs Canada.
The Children’s Investment Fund Foundation has provided funding for the development of focused priority areas (e.g. nutrition interventions, preterm birth) within the Lives Saved Tool model.
LiST has also been supported for periodic technical support and specific applications by over 25 different organizations.