Deployment of resident female Community Health Extension Workers (CHEWs) to a remote rural community led to major and sustained increases in service utilization, including antenatal care and facility-based deliveries.
Key components for success include:
1) providing an additional rural residence allowance to help recruit and retain CHEWs;
2) posting the female CHEWs in pairs to avoid isolation and provide mutual support;
3) ensuring supplies and transportation means for home visits; and
4) allowing CHEWs to perform deliveries.
The Ebola pandemic of 2014-16 demonstrated the crucial role of the community health workforce in preventing, responding to, and effectively treating health emergencies. As the West Africa region rebuilds its health systems after Ebola, countries and communities have identified a need to develop strategies and plans to embed the role of the community health workers (CHWs) as a foundation of an effective healthcare system. The aim of this report is to outline conclusions from the Wilton Park meeting on the topic.
In 2015, the One Million Community Health Workers (1mCHW) Campaign and mPowering Frontline Health Workers (mPowering) conducted a series of interviews and held an online discussion, hosted on the Healthcare Information for All forum, on the need of improved data on community health workers (CHWs) to help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.