Video Spotlight

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

Contraceptive uptake after training community health workers in couples counseling: A cluster randomized trial

The objective of this paper was to assess if training Health Surveillance Assistants (HSAs) in couples counseling would increase modern family planning uptake among young women in Malawi. In this cluster randomized controlled trial, 30 HSAs from Lilongwe, Malawi received training in family planning. The HSAs were then randomized 1:1 to receive or not receive additional training in couples counseling. All HSAs were asked to provide family planning counseling to women in their communities and record their contraceptive uptake over 6 months.

Year in Review 2016—World Vision International Health and Nutrition

In this "2016 Year in Review", World Vision shares notable observations on persistent challenges to reaching the Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs), alongside key examples and innovations demonstrating how they are tackling them. 

Barriers and facilitators to the implementation of lay health worker programmes to improve access to maternal and child health: qualitative evidence synthesis.

This article synthesizes the qualitative evidence of the effectiveness of lay health workers (LHWs) as well as the factors affecting implementation of LHW programs for maternal and child health. 53 studies were included primarily describing the experiences of LHWs, program recipients, and other health workers. Results from the review suggest that rather than being seen as a lesser trained health worker, LHWs may represent a different and sometimes preferred type of health worker. The close relationship between LHWs and recipients is a program strength.

Innovation in health service delivery: integrating community health assistants into the health system at district level in Zambia

This paper explores the factors that shaped the acceptability and adoption of community health assistants (CHAs) into the health system at the district level in Zambia. Using thematic analysis, data was collected through a review of documents, 6 focus group discussions with community leaders, and 12 key informant interviews with CHA trainers, supervisors and members of the District Health Management Team. Results found a perceived relative advantage of CHAs over existing community-based health workers in terms of their quality of training and scope of responsibilities.

Does task shifting yield cost savings and improve efficiency for health systems? A systematic review of evidence from low-income and middle-income countries

Research has demonstrated that task shifting, including the use of CHWs to deliver care, can improve population health. This systematic review examines whether task shifting in LMICs results in efficiency improvements by achieving cost savings. The authors identified 794 articles, and included 34 in the study. They found that substantial evidence exists for achieving cost savings and efficiency improvements from task shifting activities related to tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS.

A systematic review of strategies to increase access to health services among children in low and middle income countries

This systematic review examines the effectiveness of interventions aimed at increasing access to health services for children aged 5 years and below in LMIC. Fifty-seven studies were included in the review, and approximately half of studies (49%) were conducted in sub-Saharan Africa. The studies evaluated a diverse range of interventions and various outcomes. Supply side interventions included: delivery of services at or closer to home (by CHWs, nurses, or school programs) and service level improvements (e.g. integration of services).

Community Health Worker Programmes in the WHO African Region: Evidence and Options

The purpose of this policy brief is to inform discussions and decisions in the World Health Organization (WHO) African Region on policies, strategies and programmes to increase access to primary health care (PHC) services and make progress towards universal health coverage (UHC) by expanding the implementation of scaled-up CHW programmes. 

Community health worker perspectives on a new primary health care initiative in the Eastern Cape of South Africa

This study sought to understand CHW perspectives on a new primary health initiative in South Africa called Re-engineering Primary Health Care (rPHC). This initiative aims to provide a preventive and health-promoting community-based PHC model. Focus group discussions and surveys on the knowledge and attitudes of 91 CHWs working on community-based rPHC teams in the King Sabata Dalindyebo (KSD) sub-district of Eastern Cape Province were conducted.

Community Health Workers as Social Marketers of Injectable Contraceptives: A Case Study from Ethiopia

This study in Tigray, Ethiopia investigated the impact of a service delivery model that combined community-based distribution (CBD) of contraception with social marketing. 626 volunteer CHWs were recruited and trained to administer depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA) injections, provide counseling and referrals, and promote demand for family planning through door-to-door outreach and community meetings. Surveys of women of reproductive age, as well as of participating CHWs, were conducted at baseline and the end of the study.

Strengthening Human Resources for Nutrition

SPRING works to strengthen human resources for nutrition with the ultimate goal of increasing the number of formally-trained professional and frontline workers in nutrition, as prioritized by USAID’s Multi-Sectoral Nutrition Strategy 2014-15. This collection of resources includes the latest news, activities, publications, media, and events on strengthening human resources for nutrition. 

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