Video Spotlight

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

Building a National Research Agenda for the Community Health Worker Field

This document summarizes the results of a unique and rich dialogue during a two-day conference, in which for the first time a diverse group of individuals including CHWs, researchers and other stakeholders produced and prioritized a set of research questions about CHWs. That set of questions is the true heart of a potential
research agenda.

Community health workers "101" for primary care providers and other stakeholders in health care systems.

Today's ambulatory care providers face numerous challenges as they try to practice efficient, patient-centered medicine. This article explains how community health workers (CHWs) can be engaged to address many patient- and system-related barriers currently experienced in ambulatory care practices. Community health workers are frontline public health workers who serve as a trusted bridge between community members and health care providers. Among their varied roles, CHWs can educate and support patients in managing their risk factors and diseases and link these patients to needed resources.

Information needs of health care workers in developing countries: a literature review with a focus on Africa

Health care workers in developing countries continue to lack access to basic, practical information to enable them to deliver safe, effective care. This paper provides the first phase of a broader literature review of the information and learning needs of health care providers in developing countries.The studies suggest a gross lack of knowledge about the basics on how to diagnose and manage common diseases, going right across the health workforce and often associated with suboptimal, ineffective and dangerous health care practices.

A Summary of State Community Health Worker Laws


The  Community Health Workers in Massachusetts: Improving Health Care and Public Health Report (2009) identifies four areas in which Departments of Public Health and partner organizations can develop a sustainable CHW program: infrastructure, professional identity, workforce development, and financing. The report includes recommendations in each area and a fact sheet that summarizes the extent to which States have enacted laws addressing the four areas. 

CHW Regional Meeting: Country Follow-up Plans and Actions

The USAID-sponsored Community Health Worker (CHW) Regional Meeting was held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from June 19 to 21, 2012. Over 60 government and nongovernmental (NGO) representatives from Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia and Mali, as well as participants from NGOs and international organizations attended the meeting. The meeting, designed by Initiatives Inc.

Community Health Worker Regional Meeting Report

The USAID-sponsored Community Health Worker (CHW) Regional Meeting held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from June 19 to 21, 2012, was attended by over 60 government and non- governmental (NGO) representatives from six African countries (Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Rwanda, Uganda, and Zambia) as well as participants from international NGOs and organizations. The meeting was planned by Initiatives Inc.

1 million community health workers in sub-Saharan Africa by 2015

This editorial piece discusses the importance of community health workers in low-income countries and proposes a CHW scale-up in sub-Saharan Africa to achieve MDGs and the overarching aim of health for all.

Management of sick children by community health workers: intervention models and programme examples

This report examines approaches for the community management of sick children, specifically antimicrobial treatments by CHWs. It is based on an extensive review of literature, including peer reviewed studies, reports, program descriptions and program evaluations.

Country Case Study Ghana: Implementing a National Human Resources for Health Plan

This report describes key issues in the implementation of Ghana's health workforce development plan, which aims to address morale and distribution challenges. Priority is being given to mid-level workers operating in community settings, and to incentive schemes to improve morale and retention.

Systems support for task-shifting to community health workers

This paper outlines the importance of a systems approach when task shifting to CHWs, arguing that it cannot work unless close attention is paid to both the systems that support successful implementation and to needed expansion of human resources within the overall health care system. The paper incorporates discussion on taking a systems approach; the planning and regulatory systems; education, selection and training systems; supervision and psycho-social support systems; referral systems; and strengthening the related health workforce.


CHW Central is managed by Initiatives Inc. Site start-up was supported by the USAID Health Care Improvement Project in 2011.

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