Friday, September 22, 2017

Australian NGO to provide health training

Training doctors to train other doctors – that is how an Australian non-government organisation plans to help improve healthcare in Myanmar, in partnership with the Ministry of Health.

The International Skills and Training Institute in Health (ISTIH) will provide medical skills training and strategic planning through a trainer-to-trainer approach, institute member Professor Michael Henderson told The Myanmar Times in an interview on May 10.

“We are working like a small pebble. When we drop a pebble in the middle of the pond, the waves get bigger and bigger,” he said.

The train-the-trainer program will be conducted through a partnership between the institute, the ministry and the University of Medicine 1 in Yangon. ISTIH volunteers will visit to Myanmar to deliver training and health education to local health professionals.

“Our doctors will come and teach the local doctors how to teach other doctors. Then, these doctors are able to improve their skills and pass them on to others,” Mr Henderson said.

The two sides have agreed to sign a formal Memorandum of Intent that will enable the institute to create an organisation in Myanmar. The agreement was reached when the Australian group visited the ministry on May 7.

The institute’s support for the medical community started in June 2012, when a team of emergency medicine specialists visited Myanmar to conduct development programs. The 18-month project helped to further the development of the specialty of emergency medicine and saw 18 clinicians trained in the field.

The program is being extended to provide training to other clinical practitioners and allied health workers, including general practitioners, ambulance officers and emergency nurses.

“ISTIH’s focus will be broader than that of emergency medicine,” Mr Henderson said.

The institute will provide training programs on medical engineering, nursing, midwifery, respiratory medicine, emergency medicine and strategic planning.

The International Skills and Training Institute in Health was founded in 2005 and provides assistance to health professionals throughout the Asia Pacific region.