Refresher training on maternal and child health for Urban Community Health Volunteers: assessing knowledge and skills

Type Journal Article - Internet Journal of Medical Update
Title Refresher training on maternal and child health for Urban Community Health Volunteers: assessing knowledge and skills
Volume 1
Issue 2
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2006
Refresher training is given to the health volunteers/workers for updating and upgrading the knowledge & skills to deliver comprehensive and integrated services and to increase female involvement in the healthcare delivery system and also to develop selfhelp mechanisms at the community & family level. This study was carried out to understand the effect of Refresher training course on the knowledge and skills of Urban Community Health Volunteers (UCHVs) on Maternal and Child Health (MCH). The course was conducted by the Manipal College of Medical Sciences at the Manipal Teaching Hospital and Manipal School of Nursing, Pokhara, Nepal on seven days during the month of August, September and October' 2005. The Manipal Teaching Hospital is a tertiary care hospital catering for a large population in a hilly area in the western development region of Nepal. The numbers of Urban Community health volunteers were 56. Semi structured questionnaire with precoded closed and open ended questions in Maternal and child health were used before and after the training period. After the completion of the course, there was a significant increase in knowledge and skills of the volunteers (Z value=13.3, p KEY WORDS: Maternal and Child Health, Refresher Training, Urban Community Health Volunteers, Breast Feeding, Acute Respiratory Infection, Diarrhoeal Disease. INTRODUCTION: The term "maternal and child Health" (MCH) refers to the promotive, preventive, curative and rehabilitative health care for mothers and children. It includes the sub-areas of maternal health, child health, family planning, school health, handicapped children, adolescence and health aspects of care of children in special settings such as day care centers (1). The specific objectives of MCH are: * Reduction of maternal, perinatal, infant & childhood mortality & morbidity. * Promotion of reproductive health. * Promotion of the physical and psychological development of the child and adolescent within the family. The ultimate objective of MCH services is life long health (1). The census of 1991 in Nepal showed that 42% of the population was under 14 years of age and that 21% were in the reproductive age group of 15-44 years (2). Nepal was ranked 144 out of 174 on the 1999 Human Development Index (HDI), indicating a low level of human development as measured by life expectancy, educational attainment and adjusted income (3). The highly patriarchal nature of the society is reflected by the country's extremely low ranking (121 out of 143) on the Gender Development Index (GDI), a measure of gender disparity in human capabilities (3). This is lower than Bhutan (119), India (112), and Sri Lanka (76) but higher than Bangladesh (123) (3). Similarly, the Gender Empowerment Measure (GEM), representing the participation of women in economic, political and professional spheres, is very low at 0.19 (4). The GEM values for Bangladesh, India & Sri Lanka are 0.30, 0.24 & 0.32 respectively (5). Female life expectancy at birth is 57.1 years, lower than that in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India & Sri Lanka (58.2, 62, 62.9 & 75.4 respectively) (3). The life expectancy of female as percent of male is 97.6%...

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