What is it about?

The study examines the health system and social challenges of community health workers (CHWs) from the perspective of diverse stakeholders across five countries. It highlights critical challenges such as inadequate knowledge partly explained by insufficient training opportunities and equipment, low level of infrastructural support and poor acceptance of CHWs’ services due to local socio-cultural beliefs and gender mismatch between service providers and users.

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Why is it important?

CHWs have been identified as a critical geographical and social bridge to reaching communities with essential health services and achieving universal health coverage. There is an urgent need to address these challenges to harness their potential.


“To optimise CHW performance, stakeholders need to apply a social lens in addition to a health system approach to addressing problems.” Abimbola Olaniran (first author)

Barbara Madaj
Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Not knowing enough, not having enough, not feeling wanted: Challenges of community health workers providing maternal and newborn services in Africa and Asia, PLoS ONE, September 2022, PLOS,
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0274110.
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