Introduction: Women health volunteers (WHVs) program started since 1990 in Iran to increase the access of population to health services, especially in deprived and suburban areas. WHVs are responsible for promotion of society’s health knowledge through being a bridge between society and healthcare centers.
Objectives: This study aimed to investigate the effects of communication skills on efficacy of WHVs in urban health centers in Shahrekord city located in southwest of Iran.
Materials and Methods: In a quasi-experimental study, 45 WHVs working in urban Shahrekord health centers were enrolled and received some training on communication skills. The data were obtained from WHVs as well as their related covered families using a researcher-made questionnaire (with content validity of 86%), before and 6 months after training.
Results: The mean age of WHVs was 41.28 ± 7.55 years (range; 22-55) and 33.3% had diploma. There was a significant difference in communication skills among WHVs before and after training (P = 0.001). Among families, a significant difference of being familiar with WHVs and their duties, follow-up of health problems and transmitting health messages before and after training was detected (P = 0.001). Around 91.3% of families were satisfied from WHVs’ efficacy before training which increased into 95.9% after training (P = 0.001). Finally, 83.3% trusted in WHVs before training, increased into 89.7% after training (P = 0.001).
Conclusion: Training of WHVs about communication skills could enhance the knowledge and satisfaction of families on health issues as well as communication levels between WHVs and the families which in turn will promote the efficacy of WHVs program.