For your initial discussion post, identify and provide an example of at least two types of program evaluation and explain how you would use them to evaluate your final project program. How do these types support the justification of resource allocation in your final project program? Which of the two would you more likely recommend to justify the allocation of healthcare resources?
** Program evaluations attached**
Types of Program Evaluations
As noted earlier, there are numerous types of program evaluations. Among the most widely used are process and outcome evaluations, formative and summative evaluations, and cost-benefit and cost-effectiveness evaluations. Each of these types has specific characteristics as follows (adapted from Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation 2010, 96–101):
•Process evaluation—an evaluation that examines the extent to which a program or component part of it is operating as intended by assessing ongoing operations and whether the target population (market or audience) is being served. A process evaluation involves collecting data that describes operations in detail, including the types and levels of services provided, the location of service delivery, staffing, socio- demographic characteristics of participants, the community in which services are provided, and the linkages with collaborating agencies. A process evaluation—also called a formative or implementation evaluation—helps program staff identify needed interventions, change program components to improve service delivery, or both.
•Outcome evaluation—an evaluation that is designed to assess the extent to which a program or a component of it has affected those targeted according to specific variables or data elements. These results are expected to be caused by program activities and tested by comparing results across sample groups in the target population. This type of evaluation is also known as an impact or summative evaluation.
•Formative evaluation—a type of process evaluation of a new pro- gram or a component of it that focuses on collecting data on operations so that needed changes or modifications can be
made to the program or component in its early stages. Formative evaluations are used to provide program managers and staff with feedback about the program components that are working and those that need to be changed.
Summative evaluation—a type of outcome evaluation that assesses the results or outcomes of a program or component. This type of evaluation is concerned with the overall effectiveness of a program or component. Summative evaluations often occur at the conclusion of a program to estimate the program’s effectiveness. Evaluations conducted after a program has concluded have their uses, but evaluations that occur while a program is ongoing can result in a steady stream of improvements for the program or component, and tend to be more beneficial. Summative evaluations can be usefully conducted on an annual or biannual basis for ongoing programs.
•Cost-benefit evaluation—a type of evaluation that involves comparing the relative costs of operating a program or component (expenses, staff salaries, and so on) with the benefits (gains to individuals or society) it generates. For example, a cost-benefit evaluation of an intervention to reduce cigarette smoking would focus on the difference between the dollars expended for converting smokers into nonsmokers and the dollar savings from reduced medical care for smoking-related disease, days lost from work, and the like.
•Cost-effectiveness evaluation—a type of evaluation that involves com- paring the relative costs of operating a program or component with the extent to which the program or component met its objectives. For example, an evaluation of an intervention to reduce cigarette smoking would involve estimating the dollars that had to be expended to convert each smoker into a nonsmoker.