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Improving access to services through efficient and accountable referral pathways

At the end of 2020, DRC conducted an internal evaluation of RIMS and concluded that:

RIMS fills a clear gap in the Lebanon humanitarian response.

When asked about challenges they face with referrals, non-RIMS partners identified challenges such as having to fill referrals on multiple databases, referrals management, follow up and lack of familiarity with services, all of which were not mentioned by RIMS partners and which RIMS indeed seeks to address. With no other System than RIMS acting as a common platform to send/receive/track referrals across the response in Lebanon, RIMS seeks to mainstream and facilitate the referral process and successfully addresses those challenges mentioned by non-RIMS partners.

Indeed, RIMS improves referral pathways of its partners when it comes to:

  • Coordination,
  • Tracking and follow up on referrals,
  • Analysis and dashboards,
  • Identification of coverage and gaps in services,
  • A structured referrals management process.

Thoroughly trained on RIMS and Inter-Agency Minimum Standards on Referrals, RIMS partners tend to be more familiar with the referral process and explain it well to the person being referred to manage their expectation, abide more closely to the guiding principles on referrals and follow up within a shorter timeframe on referrals.

Finally, and most importantly, RIMS finds most of its strategic relevance when it comes to accountability.

People referred on RIMS are more likely to receive a service, and in a timely manner, than when not referred on RIMS.

Further, a significantly higher proportion of people referred on RIMS report to be satisfied with the referral process, and service delivery following the referral is most likely when being referred on RIMS, with significantly fewer people reporting that the person being referred comes again to ask for the same service.
RIMS goes under regular monitoring and evaluation process in order to continue to improve its relevance and impact in improving access to multi-sector services for vulnerable communities.