Video Spotlight

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

What encourages community health workers to use mobile technologies for health interventions? Emerging lessons from rural Rwanda

As access to mobile technologies expands, improving their effective use is key to strengthening data. This article discusses emerging lessons from rural Rwanda on CHW use of mobile technologies for health interventions. Technical characteristics such as reminders and alerts were seen to be the strongest predictors towards use, while user characteristic (age) did not influence use. Programme characteristics, specifically supervision and training, had mixed findings.

Integrating Community Health Workers Into Medical Homes

Why don’t more patient-centered medical homes (PCMHs) employ CHWs despite the evidence that they make a difference? This qualitative study researched facilitators and barriers to integrating CHWs in PCMHs in Minnesota and defines the roles of CHWs on these care teams. The study found four factors that influenced use of CHW models :1) leaders who championed the CHW model, 2) a clinic culture that was open to innovation; 3) clinic prioritization of patients’ nonmedical needs, and 4) leadership perceptions of sustainability. 

Facilitators and barriers to birth preparedness and complication readiness in rural Rwanda among community health workers and community members: a qualitative study

This qualitative study examines the facilitating factors and barriers to birth preparedness and complication readiness in rural Rwanda.  Participants perceived CHWs, attending antenatal care, and medical insurance as facilitating factors while disrespectful care and inconsistent health policies were seen as barriers. 

Quality of care for treatment of uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition delivered by community health workers in a rural area of Mali

This article presents findings from a study of treatment of uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition by community health workers in rural Mali. Key findings indicate that well-trained and supervised CHWs are capable of managing cases of uncomplicated SAM, there is an opportunity to increase access to quality treatment in Mali for SAM, and that resources needed to ensure continuous service should be further explored. 

Role of community health workers in type 2 diabetes mellitus self-management: A scoping review

This study examines the role of community health workers in type 2 diabetes mellitus self-management globally. Results show that CHWs are mostly utilized for education, support, and advocacy. 

The roles, training and knowledge of community health workers about diabetes and hypertension in Khayelitsha, Cape Town

This cross-sectional study assessed the current roles, training, and knowledge of CHWs about diabetes and hypertension in Khayelitsha, Cape Town. One hundred and fifty CHWs from two non-governmental organisations required to provide non-communicable disease care as part of a comprehensive package of services were interviewed. Results indicate that roles were broad and varied, training was seen to be unstandardized and haphazard, and basic knowledge about diabetes and hypertension was poor among the CHWs.

Community Health Workers

This report details the history and current state of CHW programs around the world and highlights the importance of sustainability and improving CHW performance. 

Evaluating the Impact of a Community Health Worker in the Heart Smarts Corner Stores

This study examines the effects of community health workers on participation in the Heart Smarts program implemented by the Food Trust. Results show higher participant retention rates and lower blood pressure rates in stores that had community health workers. The authors suggest that having community health workers in other sites would increase the number of repeat visits and help in lowering participant blood pressure. 

Evaluation of malaria rapid diagnostic test (RDT) use by community health workers: a longitudinal study in western Kenya

This study assessed whether or not community health workers maintain competency in malaria rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) administration over a twelve-month period as well as  the CHW characteristics, such as age or level of experience, that influence competencies. The results indicate that a majority of CHWs maintain RDT competency over at least a twelve-month period and that younger age and prior experience with RDT are associated with better RDT performance. 

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