The Role of Community Members in the Skilled Delivery Program in Rural Northern Ghana

Evelyn Sakeah, Boston University
Lois McCloskey, Boston University
Henry V. Doctor, Columbia University
Judith Bernstein, Boston University
Kojo Yeboah-Antwi, Boston University
Samuel Mills, World Bank Group

Following independence, Ghana had a policy of extending accessible and affordable health services to all her citizenry. The Community-Based Health Planning and Services program was introduced in 2000 to bring health services to the doorsteps of the people through partnership between rural communities and health professionals. The community midwives and communities collaborate to promote skilled attendants at birth in rural areas. Using an intrinsic case study design with qualitative data collection technique, we found community volunteers and TBAs help to provide education on skilled delivery care and they also refer or accompany their clients for skilled delivery care, especially where there is strong community participation. The political authorities, traditional leaders and community members provide resources for the skilled delivery program. In community participation, both financial and non-financial incentives are necessary to boost the morale of volunteers and TBAs. Communities are a resource for the skilled delivery program in rural areas.

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Presented in Poster Session 2