Year : 2014  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 468-472

Perceived responsibilities and operational difficulties of anganwadi workers at a coastal south Indian city

1 Department of Pediatrics, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal University, Mangalore, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal University, Mangalore, India

Correspondence Address:
Sowmini P Kamath
Department of Pediatrics, Kasturba Medical College, Light House Hill Road, Mangalore - 575 001, Karnataka
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Source of Support: Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi under ICMR STS programme in 2010, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0975-2870.135270

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Context: Anganwadi worker (AWW) is an important functionary in integrated child development scheme (ICDS). Aim: To study perceived responsibilities, workload, operational difficulties, and satisfaction level of AWWs. Materials and Methods: Prospective observational cross-sectional study of 66 AWWs using a pre-designed proforma: Analysis using Statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) version 11.5. Results: Pre-school education, house visits, records-keeping were perceived as important activities by 92.4%, 60.6%, and 57.6%, respectively, growth monitoring and immunization by 3% and 4.5%, respectively; 51.5% did not have adequate time for duties, and 74.2% were doing non-ICDS duties. Heavy workload was the major perceived operational difficulty for 66.7% of the respondents. Timely supplementary food was available as per 92.4%. Inadequacies in equipments, workspace, training, and staffing were noted by 47%, 18.2%, 7.6%, 7.6%, respectively. No operational difficulties were seen by 10.6%. Induction job training was provided to 36 (54.5%), and 17/66 (25.8%) felt they were inadequately trained despite yearly refresher courses. Dissatisfaction with monthly honorarium, availability of equipment, supplementary food, and maintenance of registries was reported by 89.4%, 53%, 54.6%, and 43.9%, respectively. Despite this, 62.1% (40/66) were satisfied. Conclusions: Supplementary nutrition, growth monitoring, and immunization of children along with health education though being primary duties were given less emphasis. Heavy workload was the major perceived operational difficulty. Adequate staff, workspace, equipments, timely monthly honorarium should be provided along with training and avoidance of non-ICDS duties would help in achieving the objectives of ICDS.

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