Training 300+ CHWs to use CommCare in Haiti


Dimagi and Pathfinder International conducted a series of large scale trainings throughout the month of September with twelve Haitian implementing partners in Port-au-Prince.  We trained more than 300 Haitian Community Health Workers (CHWs, or Agent Sante Communitere PolyvalentASCPs in French) to use Pathfinder and Dimagi’s mSante CommCare application to deliver health services.  With these trainings we began taking mSante, the SSQH-Center South mSante mHealth project, to scale.  This project is a collaboration between Dimagi, Pathfinder International, USAID, the Haitian Ministry of Health (Ministère de la Santé Publique et de la Population or MSPP) and 19 implementing partners.

We held the trainings at four locations around Port-au-Prince, and one in the southern city of Les Cayes.  Partner organizations provided space to conduct the trainings, as well as the CHWs.  Dimagi and Pathfinder delivered Handxom tablets loaded with the new mSante CommCare application and conducted four days of training in the use of mSante for service delivery and case management, along with instruction on the care and maintenance of the Haitian assembled tablets.

These trainings were the culmination of months of preparation on the part of Dimagi and Pathfinder International.  We collaborated closely with partners to create the initial application throughout the spring, and then in the summer we added additional content and created extensive training materials.  We needed to take a broad sample of Haitian Community Health Workers, both rural and urban, and with widely varying technical literacy, and make them into CommCare proficient CHWs.  In the process we learned more about the challenges we can expect to face, as well as the assets we have to help us make this happen.  CHWs from our pilot site in Fermathe proved very helpful in explaining the system to new trainees, as peers who had already been using the system for months.

mSante is a sophisticated application for case management (client-tracking over time), health service delivery (including multimedia messaging aimed at encouraging healthy behaviors), a referrals system for tracking patients between the home and the health facility, a supervision and management system for improving the accountability of CHWs, and modules targeted at Family Planning, Maternal and Child Health.  We are growing mSante to include thousands of CHW users and content covering all of the areas included in the MSPP CHW curriculum- from HIV and malaria, to tuberculosis and diarrheal illnesses, as well as the already included content.

Our implementing partners include Clinique Bel-Air, CDS, Fermathe Baptiste Mission Hospital, FONDEFH, FONLAVIM, FOSREF, ICC – Grace Children’s Hospital, OBCG, OBDC, PSCF, MEBSH, and Clinique Saint Martin II.  We did initial development and piloting of the mSante application with the CHWs and the help of the Fermathe Baptiste Mission Hospital, whose CHWs also graciously contributed to the large scale trainings this past month.

CHW Training _Martissant




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