Community Health Workers: Effective & Efficient Healthcare Solution, with Dr. Prabhjot Singh

by | July 23, 2012
Categories: Global Health, News

Prabhjot Singh, CGSD’s Director of Systems Design, was featured in last week’s The Academic Minute, a daily radio program on WAMC which invites academic experts from a range of disciplines to share their research. During the program, Prabhjot addressed how the US, with its exorbitant healthcare costs, could look to certain practices in the developing world to improve efficiency — specifically, deploying community health workers. Program excerpt:

“Across underserved areas where doctors and nurses are scarce, community health workers are already a vital link between household and health systems…For example, for a child with a fever, a worker can confirm a case of malaria with a rapid diagnostic test, and if positive, administer the proper medicine, while alerting the local clinic for follow-up support with a mobile phone….Even though Community Health Workers have been around for 40 years in countries as varied as Brazil, Nigeria and India, the convergence of management systems, diagnostic and mobile technology, and political leadership is minting a new generation of community health systems.”

Most of the causes of child death in developing countries are common and preventable, and CHWs can test, treat and/or refer many of these cases. CHWs improve accessibility to healthcare providers and have seen success in areas with limited resources and health professional shortages.

Community Health Worker Deborah Adjei Checks Up On Baby Abina. Photo via Millennium Promise.

Could it work in the US? Listen to the full podcast here.

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