Challenges to the implementation of the integrated management of childhood illness (IMCI) at community health centres in West Java province, Indonesia
CR Titaley1, H Jusril1, I Ariawan1, N Soeharno1, T Setiawan2, MW Weber3
1 Center for Health Research Universitas Indonesia, Faculty of Public Health Universitas Indonesia, West Java, Indonesia
2 World Health Organization, country office, Dr Adhyatma Building, Ministry of Health, Jakarta 12950, Indonesia
3 World Health Organization, Indonesia country office, Dr Adhyatma Building, Ministry of Health, Jakarta 12950, Indonesia; World Health Organization Regional Office for South-East Asia, New Delhi, India
C R Titaley
Center for Health Research Universitas Indonesia, Building G, 2nd Floor, Room 211, Faculty of Public Health Universitas Indonesia, UI Campus Depok, West Java, 16424, Indonesia
Background: The integrated management of childhood illness (IMCI) is a comprehensive approach to child health, which has been adopted in Indonesia since 1997. This study aims to provide an overview of IMCI implementation at community health centres (puskesmas) in West Java province, Indonesia.
Methods: Data were derived from a cross-sectional study conducted in 10 districts of West Java province, from November to December 2012. Semi-structured interviews were used to obtain information from staff at 80 puskesmas, including the heads (80 informants), pharmacy staff (79 informants) and midwives/nurses trained in IMCI (148 informants), using semi-structured interviews. Quantitative data were analysed using frequency tabulations and qualitative data were analysed by identifying themes that emerged in informants’ responses.
Results: Almost all (N = 79) puskesmas implemented the IMCI strategy; however, only 64% applied it to all visiting children. Several barriers to IMCI implementation were identified, including shortage of health workers trained in IMCI (only 43% of puskesmas had all health workers in the child care unit trained in IMCI and 40% of puskesmas conducted on-the-job training). Only 19% of puskesmas had all the essential drugs and equipment for IMCI. Nearly all health workers acknowledged the importance of IMCI in their routine services and very few did not perceive its benefits. Lack of supervision from district health office staff and low community awareness regarding the importance of IMCI were reported. Complaints received from patients’families were generally related to the long duration of treatment and no administration of medication after physical examination.
Conclusion: Interventions aiming to create local regulations endorsing IMCI implementation; promoting monitoring and supervision; encouraging on-the-job training for health workers; and strengthening training programmes, counselling and other promotional activities are important for promoting IMCI implementation in West Java province, and are also likely to be useful elsewhere in the country.