235039 Implementing Community-Based Health Promotion projects: A case study of the Nutrition and Malaria Control for Child Survival Project, Ghana

Monday, October 31, 2011: 8:48 AM

Patience A. Afulani, MBChB, MPH , Department of Community Health Sciences, UCLA School of Public Health, los Angeles, CA
John Koku Awoonor-Williams, MD, MPH, MPP , Director of Regional Health Services, Upper East Region of Ghana, The Ghana Health Service, Bolgatanga, Upper East Region, Ghana
Ernest Opoku, MD, MPH , Upper East Regional Health Administration, Ghana Health Service, Upper East Region, Ghana
Background: The Nutrition and Malaria Control for Child Survival Project (NMCCSP) aims at reducing mortality among children under the age of two years, through improved utilization of selected community based health and nutrition services for children and pregnant women, delivered by Community Child Growth Promoters (CCGPs). The purpose of this assessment was to review the implementation of the NMCCSP in Bongo district of the Upper East Region of Ghana; and to identify perceptions of stakeholders about the role of the CCGPs. Methodology: Qualitative methods were employed: Key informant interviews with health workers and CCGPs; structured observations at growth promotion sites; exit interviews with caregivers; and two focus groups with CCGPs and Care givers. Findings: Despite one and half years since the inception of the project, there are still several problems with the implementation; high attrition of CCGPs due to lack of incentives, inappropriate sites with inadequate tools for growth promotion sessions; poor counseling of care givers; and inadequate training and supervision of CCGPs. The role of the CCGPs was well accepted by both care givers and health workers in the district. Increased Antenatal and Child welfare clinic attendance was attributed to the work being done by CCGPs. CCGPs perceived their role as very important in their communities. Conclusions: This appraisal adds to the growing evidence on the important role being played by Community Health Workers (CHWs) in the developing world. It however brings to bear challenges in program implementation posed by poor incentives, inadequate logistics, training and supervision of CHWs.

Learning Areas:
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
Identify challenges in the implementation of Community-based health promotion projects using community health workers.

Keywords: Community-Based Health Promotion, Nutrition

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I conducted the rapid appraisal of the Nutrition and Malaria Control for Child Survivial Project during my fieldwork/internship with the Ghana Health service.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

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