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Taking a Community-Based Participatory Research Approach in the Development of Methods to Measure a Community Health Worker Community Advocacy Intervention
Abstract

Abstract:

Background: Public health advocacy is by necessity responsive to shifting sociopolitical climates, and thus a challenge of advocacy research is that the intervention must by definition be adaptive. Moving beyond the classification of advocacy efforts to measurable indicators and outcomes of policy, therefore, requires a dynamic research approach.

Objectives: The purposes of this article are to (1) describe use of the CBPR approach in the development and measurement of a community health worker (CHW) intervention designed to engage community members in public health advocacy and (2) provide a model for application of this approach in advocacy interventions addressing community-level systems and environmental change.

Methods: The Kingdon three streams model of policy change provided a theoretical framework for the intervention. Research and community partners collaboratively identified and documented intervention data. We describe five research methods used to monitor and measure CHW advocacy activities that both emerged from and influenced intervention activities.

Discussion: Encounter forms provided a longitudinal perspective of how CHWs engaged in advocacy activities in the three streams. Strategy maps defined desired advocacy outcomes and health benefits. Technical assistance notes identified and documented intermediate outcomes. Focus group and interview data reflected CHW efforts to engage community members in advocacy and the development of community leaders.

Application of Lessons Learned: We provide a model for application of key principles of CPBR that are vital to effectively capturing the overarching and nuanced aspects of public health advocacy work in dynamic political and organizational environments.