Millennium Villages Community Health Worker Program




The CSDS partnered with the Earth Institute and the UN Millennium
Village Project (UNMV) to develop a set of training tools for a new “strata” of
community health care worker – local high school graduates. The goal was to train a
“physicians assistant” to deliver 70% of clinic services to perform household visits.
At our rst “design jam” at Pratt Institute, 20 designers were introduced to the CHW
projects by Neal Lesh, Prabhjot Dhadialla and Patty Michel from the Earth Institute.
The designers learned some staggering statistics; that there is about 1 nurse or
doctor for every 28,000 people in a village cluster, that most of them are stationed in
clinics that are extremely dicult to get to by people living in rural areas, that one in
sixteen women die in childbirth, and that one child dies of malaria every 30 seconds.
Household visits have proven to be the most eective way to address the issues of
infant mortality, maternal health, malaria and HIV/AIDS. The goal of this project was
to provide more capacity to deliver diagnostic services by training local people from
the village clusters to take on basic household visits and increase access to healthcare
in rural areas by 500%.
Over 5 months a group of over 40 designers worked to put together training
materials suited to the task; a Trainer of Trainers manual (TOT), a Community
HealthCare Worker reference book (CHW), and a set of House Hold (HH) graphical
cards used to educate families about nutrition, prevention, and the early detection
of malaria, HIV and tuberculosis. The designers restructured a dense, 2,000 page text
document that covered 25 clinical sectors for medical professionals – into 200 highly
visual pages that provide easily navigable algorithms for evaluating health during
household visits, graphical tools for educating clients, and visually organized content
that is accessible to someone with the equivalent of a high school education.
The books have served as an analog version that has increased understanding how
best to translate this material onto a smart phone.


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