This article is accompanied by sample forms, dataset definitions and sample data saved in this folder. For help on deploying the workflow, skip to 2. Deploying the workflow.
Community health workers (CHWs) are often the primary source of healthcare in rural and low-resource parts of the world, and their work can provide valuable information about public health trends. The job of a CHW involves a lot of record keeping, including tracking households, scheduling consultations, listing referrals, and taking stock of supplies.
SurveyCTO can greatly assist with management of CHWs and keep track of what they are doing especially with our advanced offline features, which enables seamless offline record-keeping. This article provides you with a SurveyCTO workflow that can help you easily manage your own CHW programs.
This use case covers the following sections:
- Deploying the workflow
- Understanding the workflow
- Workflow components
- Customization and improvements
In this workflow, you will be able to:
|Track community health workers using an enumerator field and an enumerator dataset.|
|Gather household data, including information about each household member.|
|Generate unique household IDs and household member IDs without using randomly generated IDs, and without having to first submit previous forms to the server.|
|Publish household and household member information to server datasets.|
|Ask about the symptoms of household members, and help determine if those symptoms are indicative of a disease.|
|Schedule a consultation in a cases dataset for each household member who requests one (a single form instance can create multiple cases using long publishing).|
2. Deploying the workflow
You can find the sample workflow files in this folder. To better understand how all these workflow components relate to each other, take a look at section 4. Workflow components.
For help with deployment, check out our support article Deploying form definitions and server datasets. This workflow uses case management. To make sure this workflow doesn't interfere with any existing cases dataset, we have provided an alternative cases dataset ID, "chw_consultations". In SurveyCTO Collect, be sure to also enable the Manage Cases menu. To learn how to do this, check out part 3 of our Guide to case management, section On a mobile device.
3. Understanding the workflow
The workflow is composed of two main parts:
- Collecting household information and symptoms, and
- Conducting scheduled consultations for household members.
In this workflow, you will:
Capture household information
Enter symptoms, and determine if they are indicative of any diseases
Open scheduled consultations
Test for possible diseases from last form
Close consultations when they are complete
4. Workflow components
This workflow has two forms and six server datasets. Below, you can find a diagram showing the relationship between these components, as well as a non-comprehensive list of all components, the correspondent files and main purposes. If you would like to learn more about how each component works, its structure and technical characteristics, take a look here.
|Workflow Component Files
Click on the section to access the files.
5. Customization and improvements
SurveyCTO has endless possibilities, so this workflow is only the beginning. Feel free to modify and expand on this workflow to fit your own needs. Here are some tips on what you can add:
- A recommendation form where household members can recommend other households that could benefit from a visit from a CHW. These new households can be published to the cases dataset, so they will be listed together with the consultations.
- A stock management form and server dataset. The consultation form involves asking the CHW which supplies were used during the consultation (such as medical tests). You can have a server dataset that keeps track of the number of supplies there are, and use the new Add functionality in dataset publishing to reduce supplies from the total count, or add to the total count to keep track of how often resources are used (so you know how often supplies are used, so you know which ones to stock more often). You can also have a sales form where the CHW sells products to their patients, such as cookstoves or lanterns, which again publishes to the stock management form.
- Use the table-list field plugin to make it easier to find a household or household member from a list. This plug-in allows you to sort, search, and filter a table list using different criteria.
- Use the create-google-event field plug-in to schedule events, such as consultations, in Google Calendar.
- Update the household form so the household head can be changed if it was already set in a previous form.
- In the consultation form, add fields to refer the patient to a doctor if there is a serious issue the CHW cannot treat on their own.
- When selecting primary caregivers, filter out children below a certain age (e.g. under 5).
- Symptoms for diseases are from the CDC website. Advice is based on information from the CDC website and the Mayo Clinic website. However, while the sources are reliable, the workflow was not designed by a medical professional. You are welcome to use these resources in your own workflows, but be sure to double-check all medical-related information.
- Medicine categories are based on this page from the FDA. For simplicity, we only include a few, but your own form can include more, or even ask for the specific name of the medication.
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