Author(s): Archana S, Nongkrynh B, Anand K, Pandav CS
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Abstract BACKGROUND: High prevalence of reproductive morbidities is seen among adolescents in India. Health workers play an important role in providing health services in the community, including the adolescent reproductive health services. A study was done to assess the feasibility of training female health workers (FHWs) in the classification and management of selected adolescent girls' reproductive health problems according to modified WHO algorithms. METHODS: The study was conducted between Jan-Sept 2011 in Northern India. Thirteen FHWs were trained regarding adolescent girls' reproductive health as per WHO Adolescent Job-Aid booklet. A pre and post-test assessment of the knowledge of the FHWs was carried out. All FHWs were given five modified WHO algorithms to classify and manage common reproductive morbidities among adolescent girls. All the FHWs applied the algorithms on at least ten adolescent girls at their respective sub-centres. Simultaneously, a medical doctor independently applied the same algorithms in all girls. Classification of the condition was followed by relevant management and advice provided in the algorithm. Focus group discussion with the FHWs was carried out to receive their feedback. RESULTS: After training the median score of the FHWs increased from 19.2 to 25.2 (p - 0.0071). Out of 144 girls examined by the FHWs 108 were classified as true positives and 30 as true negatives and agreement as measured by kappa was 0.7 (0.5-0.9). Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) were 94.3\% (88.2-97.4), 78.9\% (63.6-88.9), 92.5\% (86.0-96.2), and 83.3\% (68.1-92.1) respectively. DISCUSSION: A consistent and significant difference between pre and post training knowledge scores of the FHWs were observed and hence it was possible to use the modified Job Aid algorithms with ease. Limitation of this study was the munber of FHWs trained was small. Issues such as time management during routine work, timing of training, overhead cost of training etc were not taken into account. CONCLUSIONS: Training was successful in increasing the knowledge of the FHWs about adolescent girls' reproductive health issues. The FHWs were able to satisfactorily classify the common adolescent girls' problems using the modified WHO algorithms.
This article was published in BMC Health Serv Res
and referenced in Journal of Community Medicine & Health Education