Video Spotlight

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

Can formalizing links among community health workers, accredited drug dispensing outlet dispensers, and health facility staff increase their collaboration to improve prompt access to maternal and child care? A qualitative study in Tanzania

An intervention brought together community health workers, health facility staff, and accredited drug dispensing outlet (ADDO) dispensers to improve maternal and newborn health through a mechanism of collaboration and referral. This study explored barriers, successes, and promising approaches to increasing timely access to care by linking the three levels of health care provision.

CHW Defies Culture and Encourages Women to Give Birth in Hospital

Lochuch, a CHW in Kenya, faces many challenges in her job as she tries to protect the health of those in her community.  She has dealt with angry husbands and ambulance denials;  actions that could lead to harm of pregnant women. Lochuch is working to ensure that women can deliver in a hospital.  This article details her personal experience overcoming barriers in her community and the resilience with which she and her co-workers advocate for their clients.

Reaching The Remote - The Tool That Might Have Saved My Namesake

This article draws on the importance of CHWs in post conflict countries.  Sidibe details personal experience in East Timor where he worked as a Peace Corps Volunteer, but emphasizes his new work in Liberia and the health improvements that have been made as a result of CHWs.  Liberia and surrounding nations post Ebola were left with a lack of health resources posing a challenge to its people.  With the support of the international community these countries are now establishing CHWs to help with preventative care in communities across the country.

Improving access to child health services at the community level in Zambia: a country case study on progress in child survival, 2000–2013

This study on child survival, presents indicators, national document, and qualitative data from key informants and community women describing the factors that have enabled Zambia to successfully reduce under-five mortality over the last 15 years and achieve Millennial Development Goal (MDG) #4. Study results found a Zambian national commitment to ongoing reform of national health strategic plans and efforts to ensure universal access to effective maternal, neonatal and child health (MNCH) interventions, creating an environment that has promoted child health.

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.

Effect of Community Health Strategy on Focused Antenatal Care Coverage: A Pretest-Posttest Experimental Study in Rural Mwingi West Sub-County; Kenya

In Kenya, maternal and child mortality rates are still high despite government efforts aimed at improving MCH. This study’s objective was to determine the effect of a CHW led primary health care intervention, Community Health Strategy (CHS) on focused antenatal care (FANC) in Mwingi, Kenya. Researchers employed a pretest -posttest experimental study design with 1 pretest and 2 post-test surveys in intervention and control sites. Data was collected from 422 households in each survey and the main respondents were women with a child aged 9-12 months.

Implementation research on community health workers’ provision of maternal and child health services in rural Liberia

This paper assesses the change in the use of essential maternal and child health services in Konobo, Liberia after the implementation of an enhanced CHW program. Last Mille Health, a nongovernmental organization, partnered with the Liberian Ministry of Health to pilot the CHW program. The program had enhanced recruitment, training, supervision, and compensation. Researchers conducted cross-sectional cluster surveys before and after the program implementation.

A comprehensive description of three national community health worker programs and their contributions to maternal and child health and primary health care

This is an in-depth review of the effectiveness of CHW programs in Ethiopia, Brazil, and Nepal. The main objective of this report is to provide insight and examples of successful CHW programs for other countries that are looking to build and strengthen their own CHW programs, specifically in the maternal and child health field. 

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

The chronic shortage of health workers globally is a major obstacle when trying to provide crucial health care delivery in areas of the world where it is needed the most. A way to approach this issue has been to “task shift” health professional roles to providers such as lay health workers (LHW), a “lay person” that has been trained to provide health services but is not a conventional health professional. This review seeks to assess the effectiveness of LHWs and explore factors that can influence the success of LHW programs in maternal and child health programs. 
 

Assessing Early Access to Care and Child Survival during a Health System Strengthening Intervention in Mali: A Repeated Cross Sectional Survey

In 2012, 6.6 million children under age five died worldwide, most from diseases with known means of prevention and treatment. A delivery gap persists between well-validated methods for child survival and equitable, timely access to those methods. A health systems strengthening intervention was implemented in peri-urban Mali designed to improve child survival by improving rapid access to prevention and treatment.

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