Integrating Community Health Worker Roles to Improve Facility Delivery Utilization in Tanzania: Evidence from an Interrupted Time Series Analysis

Katharine D. Shelley, Rose Mpembeni, Gasto Frumence, Elizabeth A. Stuart, Japhet Killewo, Abdullah H. Baqui, David H. Peters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objectives: Despite renewed interest in expansion of multi-tasked community health workers (CHWs) there is limited research on HIV and maternal health integration at the community-level. This study assessed the impact of integrating CHW roles for HIV and maternal health promotion on facility delivery utilization in rural Tanzania. Methods: A 36-month time series data set (2014–2016) of reported facility deliveries from 68 health facilities in two districts of Tanzania was constructed. Interrupted time series analyses evaluated population-averaged longitudinal trends in facility delivery at intervention and comparison facilities. Analyses were stratified by district, controlling for secular trends, seasonality, and type of facility. Results: There was no significant change from baseline in the average number of facility deliveries observed at intervention health centers/dispensaries relative to comparison sites. However, there was a significant 16% increase (p < 0.001) in average monthly deliveries in hospitals, from an average of 202–234 in Iringa Rural and from 167 to 194 in Kilolo. While total facility deliveries were relatively stable over time at the district-level, during intervention the relative change in the proportion of hospital deliveries out of total facility deliveries increased by 17.2% in Iringa Rural (p < 0.001) and 14.7% in Kilolo (p < 0.001). Conclusions for Practice: Results suggest community-delivered outreach by dual role CHWs was successful at mobilizing pregnant women to deliver at facilities and may be effective at reaching previously under-served pregnant women. More research is necessary to understand the effect of dual role CHWs on patterns of service utilization, including decisions to use referral level facilities for obstetric care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1327-1338
Number of pages12
JournalMaternal and child health journal
Volume23
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2019

    Fingerprint

Keywords

  • Bypassing
  • Community health worker
  • Facility delivery
  • Interrupted time series
  • Maternal child health services
  • Segmented regression
  • Tanzania

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this