On-going Research

Tracking and reviewing the work status of Advanced Skilled Birth Attendants (ASBA) training graduates in Nepal

25 Feb, 2022

Nick Simons Institute (NSI) has been providing technical and financial support to strengthen the various in-service training conducted by National Health Training Center (NHTC). One of the in-service training courses is “Advanced Skilled Birth Attendants (ASBA)”. The objective of the ASBA training is to enhance the skills regarding the management of obstetric emergencies primarily focusing on Caesarean Section (CS). Medical Doctors who have completed an ASBA course by NHTC is defined as ASBAs. They also assist MDGPs to perform CS and other essential surgeries. After completion of the training, graduates are supposed to be deployed at hospitals where CS service is available. As of 2076/77, about 234 ASBAs have been trained.

The ASBA in-service training is initiated to fulfill the shortage of specialized human resources in a rural hospital of Nepal to manage obstructed maternal and neonatal health problems. Till now, limited study has been done to explore the status of those graduates. It is essential to evaluate whether the pregnant women have been getting CS services despite the absence of specialized health workers.

NSI (Research, Advocacy and Monitoring Unit) is conducting a study to determine whether the ASBA graduates can fulfill the gap of human resources to provide comprehensive emergency obstructive care in rural hospitals of Nepal. This study will explore whether the purpose of training is achieved or not.  For this, we will look at the working status of ASBA graduates, investigate whether the ASBAs got the opportunity to work at Comprehensive Emergency Obstetric and Neonatal Care (CEONC) hospitals, and utilize their skills within 1 year of training completion. We will collect qualitative data from the sampled hospitals where CEONC service is available and ASBAs have been working.  Data will be analyzed to explore whether the deployment of ASBAs in rural hospitals enables the provision of CS services (primarily) in the absence of specialized doctors.

The results of this study will be useful to the government and other external development partners in scaling up the training program. In addition, it will provide suggestions to the government of Nepal regarding the appropriate deployment of graduates.

For this study ethical approval is received from Nepal Health Research Council (REF: No. 2122).

Share this: