Video Spotlight

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

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.

A systematic review of vital events tracking by community health agents

Efforts directed at improving national civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) systems are largely shifting focus from passive to active systems. Community health agents are crucial to reporting birth and death events; however, there is a dearth of literature on their roles and factors effecting their performance. This review looks at articles, mostly focused on rural parts of Africa and South East Asia, to extract information regarding the household and clinic level reporting activities of community health agents.

Effects of community health worker interventions on socioeconomic inequities in maternal and newborn health in low-income and middle-income countries: a mixed-methods systematic review

Maternal and newborn health programs in low- and middle-income countries are largely dependent on community health workers (CHWs). This study involves a mixed methods systematic review of qualitative and quantitative studies conducted between 1996 and 2017. It examines evidence on the effectiveness of CHW interventions in reducing socio economic inequities and the means through which this is achieved in varying contexts.

Community Health Worker (CHW) Movement in Hawai‘i: Moving Towards a CHW Association

This article presents perspectives drawn from a group of governmental, university and public health organizations supporting the creation of a professional association for community health workers (CHWs) in Hawai’i. It discusses monthly meetings conducted by CHWs starting from 2017 which addressed issues around work, information sharing, and the drafting of a strategic plan to form a professional association.

The status of Ghanaian community health workers’ supervision and service delivery: descriptive analyses from the 2017 Performance Monitoring and Accountability 2020 survey

Community based services are an essential component of quality primary health care. Ghana launched the National Community Health Worker (CHW) program in 2014 as part of its existing Community-based Health Planning and Services (CHPS) campaign. This study presents a descriptive analysis of data pertaining to CHW supervision and service delivery collected as part of the Performance Monitoring and Accountability 2020 survey.

Assessment of tuberculosis knowledge among Lesotho village health workers and utilisation of their tuberculosis services by the communities they serve

Village health workers (VHWs) play an integral role in educating communities about tuberculosis (TB), conducting TB screening and facilitating treatment. This cross-sectional descriptive study aimed to assess TB knowledge among VHWs, households and overall utilization of TB services. It involved interviews of populations at household and clinic levels in 20 out 0f 19 districts in Lesotho. 

Assessment of the Knowledge of Brazilian Community Health Workers regarding prenatal care

The provision of routine prenatal care is a crucial step towards reduction of health risks in women and their children that is typically the responsibility of primary health providers, often carried out by community health workers (CHWs). This cross-sectional study ascertained CHW awareness regarding (1) their general responsibilities (2) initial contact with pregnant women (3) recommended examinations and vaccinations for pregnant women (4) pregnancy complications and signs of labor and (5) lifestyle considerations for pregnant women.

Cardiovascular risk factor reduction by community health workers in rural India: A cluster randomized trial

Low cost strategies for cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk reduction are an essential requirement world over. This open label cluster randomized trial conducted in 28 villages across 3 states in India, looks at the impact of CHW-based interventions in reducing CVD risk factors in households in rural India.

Who are the real community health workers in Tshopo Province, Democratic Republic of the Congo?

There has been a growing trend of task shifting in primary health care services including the use of community health workers (CHWs) in diagnosis of childhood illness. This study examines the role of traditional healers, their ability to meet the needs of families within communities and their integration into the health system in Tshopo through 127 in depth interviews with community members and health providers. It compares their performance to those of CHWs.

Salaried and voluntary community health workers: exploring how incentives and expectation gaps influence motivation

This study presents a comparative analysis of linkages between incentives and motivation of CHWs using existing datasets of qualitative studies across six countries. Taking into consideration both salaried and volunteered CHWs the study critically examines the varied influence of incentives on motivation in given different conditions of employment and engagement.   

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