Lay Health Workers’ Experience of Delivering a Problem Solving Therapy Intervention for Common Mental Disorders Among People Living with HIV: A Qualitative Study from Zimbabwe

Abstract

There is growing evidence supporting the use of lay health workers (LHWs) to address the treatment gap for common mental disorders (CMD) through task-shifting. This study looks at the experience of LHWs delivering a problem solving therapy (PST) intervention for CMD for people living with HIV (PLWH) in a primary health care setting. Semi-structured interviews of LHWs (n = 7) and PLWH (10) who received PST were carried out using thematic content analysis. Over a 4 year period LHWs developed indigenous concepts of PST which were: Opening the mind (Kuvhura pfungwa), uplifting (kusimudzira), strengthening and strengthening further (kusimbisa and kusimbisisa) respectively. Using terms locally conceived through knowledge sharing amongst LHWs made it acceptable to deliver PST as part of their daily work. Indigenous terms conceived and developed by LWHs to describe components and processes of PST contribute to the therapy’s acceptability and continued use in primary care facilities.

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Acknowledgments

This study was supported through a Grand Challenges Canada Grant Number GMH 0087-04.

Author Contribution

DC was responsible for the design of the study conducting interviews, analysis of data and drafting of first draft leading to the final manuscript. FC was responsible for reviewing the design and reviewing of second and final draft. DM was responsible for conducting interviews, transcribing of data and review of the third draft. RV was responsible for analysis, coding of data of the interviews and review of the first and last draft. MA was responsible for reviewing the design of the study and review of final draft. CL was responsible of reviewing the design of the study, first draft and all subsequent drafts leading to the final manuscript.

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Correspondence to Dixon Chibanda.

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Chibanda, D., Cowan, F., Verhey, R. et al. Lay Health Workers’ Experience of Delivering a Problem Solving Therapy Intervention for Common Mental Disorders Among People Living with HIV: A Qualitative Study from Zimbabwe. Community Ment Health J 53, 143–153 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10597-016-0018-2

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Keywords

  • Common mental disorders
  • Problem solving therapy
  • Lay health workers
  • HIV