Video Spotlight

"'I'm a Health Worker' - Abduaraman Gidi" made by IntraHealth International.

Health for the People:​ National Community Health Worker Programs from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe

Edited by Henry B. Perry, the Health for the People: National Community Health Worker Programs from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe is a collection of CHW program data from 29 countries: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Brazil, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania, Thailand, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Published in 2020, the compilation of country case studies serves as an informative guide for the development and strengthening of CHW programs.

Acceptability and feasibility of using non-specialist health workers to deliver mental health care: Stakeholder perceptions from the PRIME district sites in Ethiopia, India, Nepal, South Africa, and Uganda

Task sharing as an approach to target mental health through community health workers is slowly gaining attention and support in LMICs. This multi-site study aimed to determine key factors that could drive task sharing in different contexts along with providing insight regarding challenges associated with the approach.

Development of a tool for assessing quality of comprehensive care provided by community health workers in a community-based care programme in South Africa.

This study discusses the development of a tool designed to help non-clinical cadres evaluate the quality of care delivered by community health workers. The content of the tool was derived through multiple sources of information including interactions with district managers, national training manuals and an exploratory study that included observations of 70 community health workers undertaking 518 household visits.  

Unintended Consequences of Community Health Worker Programs in South Africa

Task shifting from clinicians to community health workers (CHWs) in regions of the world where physician to population density is low is a growing strategy among policy makers. This article looks at structural and local factors which lead to unintended consequences of CHW program implementation such as CHWs working simultaneously for multiple organizations, freelancing in communities, and uncoordinated care leading to adverse patient outcomes.

Community healthcare worker response to childhood disorders: Inadequacies and needs

Community health workers (CHWs) are a vital link between health facilities and communities with a high prevalence of childhood disorders. However, there is a dearth of literature which suggests that CHWs are adequately skilled and trained for this task. This study looks at the training needs of CHWs in the KwaZulu-Natal province of South Africa.

A Self-Management Training Intervention: Perceptions and Practices of Community Health Workers in South Africa

Community health workers (CHWs) are being used increasingly world over as a strategy to improve access to healthcare, particularly in rural communities. However, interventions targeted as improving their skill set and bringing about health behavior change are essential. This article presents findings from systematic, in-depth interviews conducted with CHWs in South Africa to understand their insights on self-management (SM) training.

Impact of lay health worker programmes on the health outcomes of mother-child pairs of HIV exposed children in Africa: A scoping review

In countries with a heavy burden of HIV, the demand for healthcare services is often met with a dearth of health workers. This has led to a need for task shifting of lay health workers (LHWs) to improve healthcare delivery. This approach has been particularly successful in the case of maternal and childcare (MCH). This review examines the impact of LHWs in improving health outcomes in Women Living with HIV (WLH) and their HIV exposed infants (HEIs).

Community health worker-delivered counselling for common mental disorders among chronic disease patients in South Africa: a feasibility study

This study assessed the feasibility and acceptability of two approaches of community health worker (CHW)-delivered mental health counselling for patients with chronic diseases. The ‘designated’ approach involved CHWs providing counselling in addition to their regular duties while the ‘dedicated’ approach involved the CHWs taking sole responsibility of delivering mental health counseling.

Qualitative assessment of facilitators and barriers to HIV programme implementation by community health workers in Mopani district, South Africa

South Africa has implemented a community-based HIV programme (CBHP) as part of its strategy to re-engineer its primary healthcare (PHC) delivery systems. This article consists of insights gathered from focus group discussions with community health workers (CHWs) and PHC nurses in order to understand the barriers and facilitating factors related to successful implementation of CBHP.

Integrating community health workers into the formal health system to improve performance: a qualitative study on the role of on-site supervision in the South African programme

This qualitative study compared the affects of two CHW supervision models – clinic-based supervision versus community-based supervision – on CHW team performance. It also examined CHW team performance when supervised by a senior nurse versus a junior nurse.   The study outlines some of the characteristics of effective supervision and finds that CHWs supervised in facilities by senior nurses are better integrated with facility teams and more able to ensure continuity of care.

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