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Evaluation of the Hepatitis C Prevention, Support and Research Program 1999/2000 – 2005/2006

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3.4 Program Resources

Funding for the first five years totalled $50M and the subsequent two one-year extensions were approved with funding at $10.648M per year including grant & contributions ($5.73M per year) and operating funds (O&M) of $4.910M per year to cover programmatic costs for contracts, meetings, evaluation and salaries for 19 full-time equivalents (FTEs) both at the National Office (12 FTEs) and the Regional Offices (7 FTEs).

In the extension years, grants and contribution (G&C) funds totalled $5.737M per year of which the Regional transfer was approximately $2.636M per year (Table 1). It is important to note that although these funding levels were approved, the Program did not necessarily receive the total funding allocated.

Table 1:
Over-all Funding Allocations during the Program's Existence
Funding Year(s) Salary & Benefits
(including Regions)
O&M $
(including Regions)
G&C $ TOTAL $$
1st 5 Year Program
1999-2004
15,904,187 18,327,813 15,768,000 50,000,000
1st Extension Year
2004-05
2,281,340 2,629,316 5,737,344 10,648,000
2nd Extension Year
2005-06
2,281,340 2,629,316 5,737,344 10,648,000
TOTAL FUNDING 20,466,867 23,586,445 27,242,688 71,296,000

A further breakdown of funding allocations over the extension years, Chart 4, shows that slightly over one-third of the O&M budget was transferred to the Regions while almost one-half of the G&C dollars were provided to the Regions.

Chart 4: Breakdown of Funding Allocations over the Extension Years (2004/2005 & 2005/2006)

Text Equivalent - Chart 4

3.5 Program Evaluation

A comprehensive mid-term evaluation was completed in 2003 and approved by the departmental Audit and Evaluation Committee. The mid-term evaluation reported on implementation, delivery issues and concerns, and progress toward desired outcomes. To assess program performance, the evaluation focussed on four key areas: Scope of the Problem, Program Implementation, Achievement of Program Outcomes, and Program Lessons Learned.

The strengths of the mid-term evaluation process included use of multiple sources to obtain data on the Program and high response rates to all surveys and interviews. The chief limitation of the evaluation was that, at mid-point, the best that could be accomplished in a single examination was a general understanding of the Program outcomes and outcome achievement; it would not have been appropriate to expect a definitive statement about the success of the Program.

An informal five-year review of the program was initiated as part of a commitment to report by the end of the program mandate, 31 March 2004. The purpose of the five-year review was to assess program outcomes and determine the extent to which objectives had been met during the Program's five-year mandate. The review also served to identify continuing gaps and areas of concern in the area of hepatitis C and within the broader context of public health.

The review process included key informant interviews as well as the examination of program summaries prepared by the CAID, program documents and a review of some of the literature in the United States and Australia. A sample of 20 community based projects or evaluation reports were also reviewed. Qualitative methods and descriptive statistical methods were used for analysis.

The five-year review provided valuable information on the program outcomes. A focus on strong performance management principles and systematic reporting against longer term outcomes such as prevention and care and treatment helped build the rigour required in methodology to be able to make generalizations about the impact of this federally funded program on disease prevention and control.

However, the five-year review had significant limitations, namely: a narrow window of time between the completion of the mid-term evaluation and the onset of the five-year review; commitment of funds for the purposes of a formal five-year evaluation were not received until November 2003; less extensive data collection methods due to fiscal restraint and time limitations; five-year review developed concurrently with the approval for a one year extension of the Program; and, recommendations for future direction developed in a time of uncertainty with regard to continued funding and changes within the Population and Public Health Branch (PPHB) of Health Canada. As a result, the Program recommended a formal summative evaluation to capture the work of all seven years of funding and provide analysis on the results, outcomes and impact of the Program since 1999. To that end, the five-year review has been used as a planning document for the extension years and was used to inform the evaluation.


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