Experts at eLearning
Africa 2011 suggested that eLearning could bridge the alarming skills
gap that exists between nurses trained in different disciplines. Some
pointed to successful partnerships with NGOs in East Africa. Others
discussed scale and replicability in African medical training.
The question of
content and related issues including information access and
development was a key theme of the session ‘What contribution can
eLearning make towards confronting the skills challenge
of Africa’s health sector?’
Mohamed Labib discussed HSO.info, a
well-resourced website with expert free health sciences information.
The vision is to make this relevant and available to all health
workers. The importance of partnerships was noted here, both
south-south and north-south. The example provided was the University
Teaching Hospital in Zambia, partnering with the Royal College of
Surgeons in Ireland.
The session included two presentations
from the Tanzanian Training Centre for International Health (TTCIH).
Angelo Nyamtema pointed out the severe shortage of healthcare workers
in Tanzania and discussed the progress being made in developing an
eLearning training programme, including their approach to pedagogical
design and course structuring.
Diana Mukami discussed the African
Medical and Research Foundation’s successful nurse upgrading
programme via eLearning. Since its inception nearly six years ago,
the programme – a classic public-private partnership – has
enrolled 7000 nurses across 108 eCentres in Kenya and graduated over
2000 nurses. It comprises General Nursing, Reproductive Health,
Community Health and Specialised Areas.