Why? Community Health Workers are widely recognised as critical to meeting the health needs of people in low- and middle-income countries
What? A major thematic discussion on CHWs
How? Dynamic discussion around 6 key questions (TBC)
Where? On the main HIFA discussion forum (with parallel discussions on CHIFA (child health), HIFA-Portuguese, HIFA-French, HIFA-Zambia)
When? 16 January to 24 February 2017
Who? Everyone with an interest in the work of CHWs and the promotion of health in low- and middle-income countries. If you are a CHW we would especially welcome your input. We are also keen to engage CHW trainers and programme managers, and people responsible for developing policy on CHWs.
The discussion will build on the learning from the recent Health Systems Research Symposium in Vancouver (November 2016) and current initiatives including the new WHO guideline on CHWs (in development). And it will lead into the Symposium on Community Health workers and their contribution towards the Sustainable Development Goals, 21-23 February 2017, Kampala, Uganda. Key points of the discussion will be presented at the Symposium, thereby providing an opportunity for people to input their experience even if they are not able to attend in person.
The discussion is organised by the HIFA Project on Community Health Workers, one of eight HIFA Projects led by HIFA volunteers. We shall address the following questions:
1. When listening to CHWs needs and priorities, what do they say is needed to enable them to do their work more effectively?
2. How are these needs being addressed? Where are the gaps?
3. Are there enough and appropriate avenues for the voices of CHWs to be heard (by the relevant stakeholders / authorities?)
4. What are the mental health and psychosocial needs of CHWs? How can these needs be better addressed?
5. Are we expecting too much of CHWs? Is there a risk of exploitation and/or burn-out? How can their work loads be better rationalised?
6. How can we meet the information and learning needs of CHWs working in challenging conditions?
HIFA members have unique experience and knowledge which they can use to bring clarity to these challenging questions.
We invite your suggestions on additional themes/questions you would like us to address – we would like the discussion to respond to your priorities.
Join HIFA today and engage with a dynamic global community of 16,000 members in 175 countries, interacting on 5 forums in English, Portuguese and French!
Acknowledgement: HIFA is grateful for sponsorship from The Lancet, Reachout Project/Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, World Vision International and USAID Assist Project.
Picture credit: © 1994 John Riber, Courtesy of Photoshare