Abstract : Introduction: ASHAs play an important role in the rollout of government health programmes such as the Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY), a conditional cash transfer scheme to incentivise women to give birth in a health facility. The ASHAs work closely with other frontline workers like Auxiliary Nurse Midwives (ANMs) and Anganawadi Workers (AWWs) to conduct community-level activities. ASHAs also act as health activists in the community who will create awareness on health and its determinants, counsel mothers on key healthy behaviours and mobilise the community towards local health planning and increased utilisation and accountability of the existing health services.
Objectives: To evaluate the Role perception and Job Performance of ASHAs.
Materials and Methods: A cross sectional study was done on 617 ASHAs. A pre-designed, semi- structured schedule was prepared in accordance with the study objectives. The questionnaire was prepared in English and the interview was conducted in Kannada language by explaining them questions one by one. Data collection was done by interview technique.
Results: 603 (97.7%) of ASHAs had positive attitude towards mobilising the community for accessing health services such as ANC, 602 (97.5%) for ANC, 599(97.08%) for institutional delivery, 597 (96.7%) for birth preparedness, 601(97.4%) for new born care, 600(97.2%) towards exclusive breast feeding. 405 (65.6%) ASHAs told that they are actively involved in distributing Iron and Folic acid tablets to pregnant women. 597 (96.7%) ASHAs informed that they educate mothers about exclusive breast feeding, while 471(76.3%) told that they encourage mothers to continue breast feeding when the child is suffering from diarrhoea.
It was found that job performance of ASHAs was significantly associated with Age, Days of Training and Duration of service of ASHAs.
Conclusion: In order to orient the ASHAs on their job profile and responsibility, there is a need to assess the knowledge and skills of Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHA) on issues relating to maternal and child health and nutrition, and also perception of their role with respect to ICDS related activities, for bringing about corrective actions.
Keywords: ASHA, Role Perception, Job performance.