Motivation and job satisfaction of Health Surveillance Assistants in Mwanza, Malawi: an explorative study|
Kok, M.C. & Muula, A.S.
Improving community health worker’s performance is vital for an effective
health system in developing countries. In Malawi, hardly any research has
been done on factors that motivate this cadre. This qualitative assessment
was undertaken to identify factors that influence motivation and job
satisfaction of health surveillance assistants (HSAs) in Mwanza district,
Malawi, in order to inform development of strategies to influence staff
motivation for better performance.
Seven key informant interviews, six focus group discussions with HSAs
and one group discussion with HSAs supervisors were conducted in
2009. The focus was on HSAs motivation and job performance. Data
were supplemented with results from a district wide survey involving
410 households, which included views of the community on HSAs
performance. Qualitative data were analysed with a coding framework, and
quantitative data with the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS).
The main satisfiers identified were team spirit and coordination, the type
of work to be performed by an HSA and the fact that an HSA works
in the local environment. Dissatisfiers that were found were low salary
and position, poor access to training, heavy workload and extensive job
description, low recognition, lack of supervision, communication and
transport. Managers and had a negative opinion of HSA perfomance,
the community was much more positive: 72.9% of all respondents had a
positive view on the performance of their HSA.
Activities associated with worker appreciation, such as performance
management were not optimally implemented. The district level can
launch different measures to improve HSAs motivation, including human
resource management and other measures relating to coordination of and
support to the work of HSAs.