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Novel approaches to measuring knowledge among frontline health workers in India: Are phone surveys a reliable option?

Author

Listed:
  • Neha Shah
  • Diwakar Mohan
  • Smisha Agarwal
  • Kerry Scott
  • Sara Chamberlain
  • Aarushi Bhatnagar
  • Alain Labrique
  • Meenal Indurkar
  • Rajani Ved
  • Amnesty LeFevre
  • on behalf of the Kilkari Impact Evaluation team

Abstract

Background: In 2017, India was home to nearly 20% of maternal and child deaths occurring globally. Accredited social health activists (ASHAs) act as the frontline for health services delivery in India, providing a range of reproductive, maternal, newborn, child health, and nutrition (RMNCH&N) services. Empirical evidence on ASHAs’ knowledge is limited, yet is a critical determinant of the quality of health services provided. We assessed the determinants of RMNCH&N knowledge among ASHAs and examined the reliability of alternative modalities of survey delivery, including face-to-face and caller attended telephone interviews (phone surveys) in 4 districts of Madhya Pradesh, India. Methods: We carried out face-to-face surveys among a random cross-sectional sample of ASHAs (n = 1,552), and administered a follow-up test-retest survey within 2 weeks of the initial survey to a subsample of ASHAs (n = 173). We interviewed a separate sub-sample of ASHAs 2 weeks of the face-to-face interview over the phone (n = 155). Analyses included bivariate analyses, multivariable linear regression, and prevalence and bias adjusted kappa analyses. Findings: The average ASHA knowledge score was 64% and ranged across sub-domains from 71% for essential newborn care, 71% for WASH/ diarrhea, 64% for infant feeding, 61% for family planning, and 60% for maternal health. Leading determinants of knowledge included geographic location, age

Suggested Citation

  • Neha Shah & Diwakar Mohan & Smisha Agarwal & Kerry Scott & Sara Chamberlain & Aarushi Bhatnagar & Alain Labrique & Meenal Indurkar & Rajani Ved & Amnesty LeFevre & on behalf of the Kilkari Impact Eval, 2020. "Novel approaches to measuring knowledge among frontline health workers in India: Are phone surveys a reliable option?," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 15(6), pages 1-23, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:plo:pone00:0234241
    DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0234241
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Boznic,Vladan & Katayama,Roy Shuji & Munoz,Rodrigo & Takamatsu,Shinya & Yoshida,Nobuo, 2017. "Prospects of estimating poverty with phone surveys : experimental results from Serbia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 8225, The World Bank.
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