Early pregnancy detection by female community health volunteers in Nepal facilitated referral for appropriate reproductive health services
Female community health volunteers (FCHVs) are a possible entry point for Nepali women to access timely reproductive health services at the village level. This evaluation assessed the success of a pilot program that trained FCHVs in early pregnancy detection using urine pregnancy tests (UPTs), counseling, and referral to appropriate antenatal, safe abortion, or family planning services. Results suggest that community health workers such as FCHVs are a promising channel for early pregnancy detection and referral. As the intervention is scaled up, the focus should be on ensuring service availability and awareness of available services, UPT supply, and creating viable options for record keeping.