Video Spotlight

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

The CHW Hub is a product of the partnership between CHW Central and the Health Systems Global Thematic Working Group (TWG) on Supporting and Strengthening the Role of Community Health Workers in Health System Development.

Thematic Working Group Goal:
To support the generation, synthesis and communication of evidence on the roll out and functioning of community health worker programs and to enable learning across geographical and political contexts

Bringing together diverse individuals and networks to share knowledge 

Laura Hoemeke (Director of Health Policy & Systems; IntraHealth International)

“To respond effectively and appropriately to needs and expectations, health services need to be organized around close-to-community networks of people-centred primary care…” WHO 13th General Program of Work

The global health community first made widescale investments in community health workers (CHWs) more than 40 years ago. But last month, I left the 71st World Health Assembly wondering whether we had learned anything from CHW experiences over the last several decades.

The 1978 Declaration of Alma-Ata underscored the central role of bringing health care “as close as possible to where people live and work” as part of achieving universal primary health care. The declaration, which is being revamped for its 40th anniversary later this year, defined primary health care (PHC) as “essential health care based on practical, scientifically sound and socially acceptable methods and technology made universally accessible to individuals and families in the community through their full participation and at a cost that the community and country can afford to maintain at every stage of their development in the spirit of self-reliance and self-determination.”

Sarita Panday (Communications Coordinator) and David Musoke (Co-Chair) of the HSG Thematic Working Group on Supporting and Strengthening the Role of Community Health Workers in Health Systems Development


Human resources for health continue to be a great challenge in both developed and developing countries. This is especially true in low-income countries. Evidence suggests that community health workers (CHWs) play a crucial role in the provision of primary health care services in resource poor areas. This blog is dedicated to show the paramount role CHWs play in the provision of universal health care through examples of their work in maternal and child health care in Nepal and Uganda.

Nepal’s Female Community Health Volunteers

The roles of CHWs are crucial in remote villages where skilled health workers and primary healthcare centres are not readily available or accessible. In a recent paper, Panday et al. (2017) studied the roles of CHWs, known as Female Community Health Volunteers (FCHVs), in maternity care in Nepal. When trained volunteers provide services to community members they exceed expectations. Not only do CHWs share health information and refer women for health checks, they also distribute paracetamol, antacid and some vitamin tablets. Such services are important in the absence of immediate access to skilled health care professionals.

CHW Hub Resources

Announcing a special collection of articles on community health workers

Thematic Working Group Partners

TWG Partners.jpg

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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