Understanding the public health role, motivations, and perceptions of Community Health Workers deployed to Low-Income Housing in Richmond, Virginia
Kinesiology & Health Sciences
Community Health Equity Research & Policy
BackgroundFor the US health indicators to improve to the level of other developed countries, the use of Community Health Workers (CHWs) in vulnerable populations has been indicated as a possible long-term intervention. There are few models of long-term deployment of CHWs as part of the district level public health system in the US.
MethodIn this study we interviewed CHWs who served as neighborhood-integrated health district staff assigned to low-income housing in Richmond, Virginia for 10 years. Qualitative analyses of their taped and transcribed interviews resulted in 5 themes from the interviews. The themes were Activities, Satisfaction, Strengths, Facilitation/Resources and Challenges. We highlighted quotes from the CHWs interviews for themes and summarized the findings from each theme.
ResultsCHWs carried out a variety of activities daily and these were described. The CHWs were generally satisfied with their job because it enabled them to assist others. The strength of their communities was resilience, and the resources they needed more included physical resources, human resources, political support, and more comprehensive programming. Their client’s challenges include transportation, mental health, and physical safety and the CHWs challenge to effectively carrying out their work with clients was trust by community members.
ConclusionThe information garnered from the CHWs would be useful in designing CHW programs at other health districts.
Obasanjo, Iyabo; Scott, Alison; Griffin, Monica; Agyemang-Duah, Amma; Westhoff, Charlie; Toney, Stephanie; and Shelton, Patrice, Understanding the public health role, motivations, and perceptions of Community Health Workers deployed to Low-Income Housing in Richmond, Virginia (2023). Community Health Equity Research & Policy.
This article posted with permission of the author and is a post-print/accept version of the article "Understanding the Public Health Role, Motivations, and Perceptions of Community Health Workers Deployed to Low-Income Housing in Richmond, Virginia" by Iyabo Obasanjo et al.
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