Article

Task-Shifting to Community Health Workers: Evaluation of the Performance of a Peer-Led Model in an Antiretroviral Program in Uganda

1 Executive Directors Office, Reach Out Mbuya Parish HIV/AIDS Initiative, Kampala, Uganda.
AIDS patient care and STDs (Impact Factor: 3.58). 02/2012; 26(2):101-7. DOI: 10.1089/apc.2011.0279
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Task shifting to community health workers (CHW) has received recognition. We examined the performance of community antiretroviral therapy and tuberculosis treatment supporters (CATTS) in scaling up antiretroviral therapy (ART) in Reach Out, a community-based ART program in Uganda. Retrospective data on home visits made by CATTS were analyzed to examine the CATTS ability to perform home visits to patients based on the model's standard procedures. Qualitative interviews conducted with 347 randomly selected patients and 47 CATTS explored their satisfaction with the model. The CATTS ability to follow-up with patients worsened from patients requiring daily, weekly, monthly, to three-monthly home visits. Only 26% and 15% of them correctly home visited patients with drug side effects and a missed clinic appointment, respectively. Additionally, 83% visited stable pre-ART and ART patients (96%) more frequently than required. Six hundred eighty of the 3650 (18%) patients were lost to follow-up (LTFU) during the study period. The mean number of patients LTFU per CATTS was 40.5. Male (p = 0.005), worked for longer durations (p = 0.02), and had lower education (p = 0.005). An increased number of patients (p = 0.01) were associated with increased LTFU. Ninety-two percent of the CATTS felt the model could be improved by reducing the workload. CATTS who were HIV positive, female, not residing in the same village as their patients, more educated, married, on ART, and spent less time with the patients were rated better by their patients. The Reach-Out CHW model is labor-intensive. Triaged home visits could improve performance and allow CATTS time to focus on patients requiring more intensive follow-up.

Download full-text

Full-text

Available from: Robert Colebunders, Jan 06, 2014
1 Follower
 · 
154 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: People who inject drugs (PWID) experience poor outcomes and fuel HIV epidemics in middle-income countries in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. We assess integrated/co-located (ICL) healthcare for HIV-infected PWID, which despite international recommendations, is neither widely available nor empirically examined. A 2010 cross-sectional study randomly sampled 296 HIV-infected opioid-dependent PWID from two representative HIV-endemic regions in Ukraine where ICL, non-co-located (NCL) and harm reduction/outreach (HRO) settings are available. ICL settings provide onsite HIV, addiction, and tuberculosis services, NCLs only treat addiction, and HROs provide counseling, needles/syringes, and referrals, but no opioid substitution therapy (OST). The primary outcome was receipt of quality healthcare, measured using a quality healthcare indicator (QHI) composite score representing percentage of eight guidelines-based recommended indicators met for HIV, addiction and tuberculosis treatment. The secondary outcomes were individual QHIs and health-related quality-of-life (HRQoL). On average, ICL-participants had significantly higher QHI composite scores compared to NCL- and HRO-participants (71.9% versus 54.8% versus 37.0%, p<0.001) even after controlling for potential confounders. Compared to NCL-participants, ICL-participants were significantly more likely to receive antiretroviral therapy (49.5% versus 19.2%, p<0.001), especially if CD4≤200 (93.8% versus 62.5% p<0.05); guideline-recommended OST dosage (57.3% versus 41.4%, p<0.05); and isoniazid preventive therapy (42.3% versus 11.2%, p<0.001). Subjects receiving OST had significantly higher HRQoL than those not receiving it (p<0.001); however, HRQoL did not differ significantly between ICL- and NCL-participants. These findings suggest that OST alone improves quality-of-life, while receiving care in integrated settings collectively and individually improves healthcare quality indicators for PWID.
    Drug and alcohol dependence 09/2013; 134. DOI:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2013.09.020 · 3.28 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background:The purpose of this study was to assess patients' experience and satisfaction with pharmacy-only refill program (PRP) and to compare those who were removed from the PRP with those still in the program.Methods:A sample of 446 patients was selected from 1503 patients on antiretroviral therapy that had been enrolled in the PRP for at least 24 months. The study used interviewer-administered questionnaires to assess patients' experience and satisfaction with PRP.Results:Of the 446 patients, 133 (29.8%) were removed from the PRP. By multivariate analysis, it was found that wanting to see a clinician before their scheduled clinic visit, Christian religion, and not understanding why they were enrolled in PRP were associated with having been removed from the PRP. Patients felt that the greatest benefit from the program was the time that they saved to do other activities. Patients preferred to collect their medication every 3 months instead of every month.Conclusion:All patients interviewed scored the program high, and all recommended that the PRP should continue. Stable patients prefer to see clinicians less frequently and visit clinic less often.
    06/2013; DOI:10.1177/2325957413488179
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Community health workers (CHWs) are increasingly recognized as an integral component of the health workforce needed to achieve public health goals in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Many factors intersect to influence CHW performance. A systematic review with a narrative analysis was conducted to identify contextual factors influencing performance of CHWs. We searched six databases for quantitative, qualitative, and mixed-methods studies that included CHWs working in promotional, preventive or curative primary health care services in LMICs. We differentiated CHW performance outcome measures at two levels: CHW level and end-user level. Ninety-four studies met the inclusion criteria and were double read to extract data relevant to the context of CHW programmes. Thematic coding was conducted and evidence on five main categories of contextual factors influencing CHW performance was synthesized. Few studies had the influence of contextual factors on CHW performance as their primary research focus. Contextual factors related to community (most prominently), economy, environment, and health system policy and practice were found to influence CHW performance. Socio-cultural factors (including gender norms and values and disease related stigma), safety and security and education and knowledge level of the target group were community factors that influenced CHW performance. Existence of a CHW policy, human resource policy legislation related to CHWs and political commitment were found to be influencing factors within the health system policy context. Health system practice factors included health service functionality, human resources provisions, level of decision-making, costs of health services, and the governance and coordination structure. All contextual factors can interact to shape CHW performance and affect the performance of CHW interventions or programmes. Research on CHW programmes often does not capture or explicitly discuss the context in which CHW interventions take place. This synthesis situates and discusses the influence of context on CHW and programme performance. Future health policy and systems research should better address the complexity of contextual influences on programmes. This insight can help policy makers and programme managers to develop CHW interventions that adequately address and respond to context to optimise performance.
    Health Research Policy and Systems 12/2015; 13(1):1. DOI:10.1186/s12961-015-0001-3 · 1.86 Impact Factor