Collecting Data for Evaluation
To position the program best for a successful evaluation, community health worker (CHW) program planners and
evaluators should explore using simple data collection techniques and existing data tracking mechanisms, such
- Individual encounter forms
- Group education session documentation
- Clinic reports and patient charts
- Case management reports
- Electronic health records
- Patient, CHW, or healthcare provider surveys
- Interviews with patients and stakeholders
If a CHW program focuses on health services delivery, it may be important for CHWs or other members of the care
delivery team to record and track patient information pre- and post-intervention. Evaluations may also solicit
feedback from community representatives, program stakeholders, and healthcare providers. These data may be used
to assess the effectiveness of CHW outreach or the quality of a health education session. Some programs may also
ask CHWs for feedback about their job satisfaction and other experiences.
CHWs can be trained to participate in program data collection and evaluation by entering patient data into
electronic health record systems or collecting data from patients, including information on patient-reported
changes in health status, knowledge, beliefs, and actions. CHWs may also be trained to participate in
qualitative research, such as conducting focus groups, and supporting community-based participatory research by
enrolling community members in studies, educating stakeholders about research goals, and supporting
dissemination of research findings.
Resources to Learn More
An Innovative Method to Involve Community Health
Workers as Partners in Evaluation Research
Discusses the dual role of CHWs as lay health workers and researchers. Describes a process through which CHWs
could actively participate in the collection of qualitative evaluation data.
Author(s): Peacock, N., Issel, M., Townsell, S., Chapple-McGruder, T., & Handler, A.
Citation: American Journal of Public Health, 101(12): 2275-2280
ROI Toolkit: A
Guide for Conducting a Return on Investment Analysis of Your Community Health Worker Program
Provides detailed instructions when calculating a return on investment (ROI) analysis for a CHW program.
Identifies the types of data needed for the calculations and describes how an ROI analysis can be used to
support program sustainability. Provides an example from a Federally-Qualified Health Center..
Organization(s): MHP Salud