Video Spotlight

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

Lucina N Koyio, Wil JM van der Sanden, Elizabeth O Dimba, Jan Mulder, Andre JAM van der Ven, Matthias AW Merkx and Jo E Frencken

In Kenya, primary healthcare (PHC) providers (mainly clinical officers and nurses) at health facilities and community health workers (CHWs) in the field are required to integrate oral care of HIV patients into the PHC system. However, these health workers have not been educated on oral diseases. Detecting Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) related orofacial lesions (HROLs) as part of their community duties would increase the probability of early identification of HIV-infected people and those developing highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) resistance.

HIV patients in Kenya might not seek early care, even when the signs and symptoms are overwhelming, owing to social stigma and ignorance about the lesions (LNK personal communication). In line with the national oral health policy objectives of Kenya, of developing targeted community oral health programs, a CHW training program on oral care of HIV patients was needed. However, for development of a tailor-made training programme for CHWs and to ensure their participation in the field after completion of the training, it was essential that information first be obtained from CHWs regarding their knowledge and opinions about HROLs and common oral diseases.This study aimed to assess the knowledge and opinions of CHWs regarding HROLs and other oral diseases. 

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