ASHA workersDate: 25 May 2022 Tags: Miscellaneous
ASHA (Accredited Social Health Activist) workers were recognised by the WHO as ‘Global Health Leaders’.
The recognition was made in lieu of their efforts in connecting the community to the government’s health programmes.
ASHA workers are community volunteers whose main work is to provide information and aid people in accessing benefits of various healthcare schemes of the government.
They connect marginalized communities with facilities such as primary health centres, sub-centres and district hospitals.
The role of these health volunteers was first established in 2005 under National Rural Health Mission (NRHM).
They are usually women between the ages of 25 and 45 years and are primarily married, widowed, or divorced.
ASHA workers should have good communication and leadership skills; should be literate with formal education up to Class 8.
They visit houses to create awareness about basic nutrition, hygiene practices, and the health services available.
They promote women to undergo ante-natal check-up, maintain nutrition during pregnancy, deliver at a healthcare facility, and suggest nutrition for children.
They counsel women about contraceptives and sexually transmitted diseases.
They provide basic medicines and treatment to people under their jurisdiction.
ASHA workers in India
There are about 10.4 lakh ASHA workers across the country. Uttar Pradesh (1.63 lakh), Bihar (89,437), and Madhya Pradesh (77,531) have the highest numbers.
Goa is the only state with no ASHA workers.
The income of ASHA workers depend on incentives under various schemes that are provided by the government.