In April 2021, UNICEF, The Global Fund, WHO, and partners under the hospice of the Health Data Collaborative community working group launched a guidance for community health worker strategic information and service monitoring. This guidance outlines a set of standardized indicators collected by community health workers on their activities and on the communities they serve. The guidance responds to the 2019 World Health Assembly resolution WHA72.3 which calls for alignment of data and digital efforts to optimize Community Health Worker (CHW) programmes, and the generation of a stronger evidence base for the impact of CHWs.
The guidance aims to reduce fragmentation and frontline reporting burdens by aligning partner and national reporting mechanisms and facilitating the harmonization and integration of CHW indicators into a broader country Health Information Systems (HIS).
Programmatic areas and indicators laid out in the operational guidance have been developed to account for country-specific contexts, community health programs maturity, and the variety of CHW cadres. The guidance suggests a menu of indicators that countries may select and prioritize in line with their community health strategies or policies. In addition to the indicators, a metadata package was developed in DHIS2 to enable partners on the ground, when developing a Community Health Management Information System (HMIS), to leverage a pre-configured package and adapt it into their country context.
As series of webinars were organized in 2022 to further disseminate the guidance across UNICEF country teams and Ministry of Health stakeholders.
Introduction of the CHW guidance on strategic information and service monitoring to MoH Staff and in-country partners
Under the leadership of the Health Data Collaborative (HDC), UNICEF held a two-hour webinar with country counterparts to introduce the guideline and DHIS2 metadata package. This webinar was designed for countries considering or in the process of strengthening their community health information systems (CHIS). The webinar served as a vehicle to further advocate for the adoption and operationalization of the guideline by the countries. About 70 participants attended the webinar, of which over one-third work for the ministries of health.
Introduction to the CHW guidance on strategic information and service monitoring with UNICEF staff
UNICEF held a 90-minute webinar to introduce the guidance on strategic information and service monitoring to programme managers within the organization. The webinar was designed for key UNICEF staff and consultants in regional offices who support community-based interventions to help them support the strengthening of Community Health Information systems. The webinar intended to motivate UNICEF managers to promote the use of the guidance, to discuss the best ways to ensure technical assistance from UNICEF/NY and Regional Offices to country offices, and to harmonize the approach on how best to introduce the guidance to countries. Over 75 people attended the webinar from UNICEF country offices across the five regions and headquarters.