The humanitarian-medical Nurse Aide Training Project of the htw saar (university of applied sciences) has been successfully evaluated at PDO

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In a ceremony the 15 Nurses of the Clinic at the PDO were awarded the official Certificates on march 14th. which were issued by the Institute of scientific further education of the htw saar at Saarbruecken/Germany..

So the nurses hold a document in hands which attest them for the first time the successful participation in a 12-weeks comprehensive Nurse Aide Training. The Nurses could improve and consolidate their nursing-related medical knowledge. For evaluation measures the Nurse Aides had to undergo a two days test before in order to evaluate their theoretical knowledge and practical skills and were interviewed.

The evaluation has been carried out by the project manager Prof. Dr. Martha Meyer and her assistant Dr. Dagmar Renaud of the htw saar in Saarbrücken/Germany. The evaluation is important in order to identify how sustainable the project has been and to gain new insights for further projects. What has been developed by a student’s group under supervision of the project manager in last summer semester 2013 at htw saar will now find it’s end with a conference on April 25nd at the university of applied sciences.

In one of our last Mingalabar newsletters we reported about the project: Six students implemented the 12-weeks course with 200 hours from September to November 2013. For the first time the Nurses followed a systematic and comprehensive training in order to individually consolidate or improve their theoretical and practical knowledge and skills.

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The course subjects were elaborated in March 2013 during mutual discussions between the project manager, the medical director Dr. Khaing and the Nurses and were bases on the specific needs of a tropical developing country.

Because of not enough “marks” after having finished school the Nurses couldn’t enter the university to study a Bachelor in Nursing. That’s why the PDO Nurses are at least non-professional educated Nurse Aides and can only acquire their medical knowledge by “training- on-the job” in the clinic as well as receiving sporadically courses held by volunteers and medical doctors.

Usually the university graduates in nursing mostly work in state-run “General Hospitals” or enter so-called “Government jobs”. Rarely one will find them in clinics like in the PDO in which their professional skills would be urgently needed to support and relief the medical doctors and to give advice to the Nurses with no professional education.

We found in our evaluation that many Nurses are very skilled in some practical areas and have individually different theoretical knowledge. Though there is a lack of a broad theoretical knowledge base in order to be able to understand relationships and to think ahead. For instance they know a lot about the relevant communicable diseases and it’s symptoms but they don’t know much about the ways of infection and contamination. Therefore, the awareness in the benefits of hygienic work to protect oneself is missing.

The courses took place in the morning between 10:00 and 11:30 a.m. as well as in the afternoon between 2:30 and 4:30 p.m. This required a lot of commitment from all and the Nurses were following the program enthusiastically. Particularly the practical courses in rehabilitative measures and giving advice to patients in order to cope with chronic disease were a completely new experience for the Nurses. We put a special focus on First Aid because there are always many people in the PDO on a very limited area and one should expect that every time an emergency can occur. That’s why we also trained the nurses in order to be multipliers by training selected staff members and teachers to be able to carry out First Aid measures.

The other course contents were related to subjects like disease related elements of anatomy, physiology, communicable and selected chronic diseases as well as hygienic wound care and hygiene rules, professional intramuscular injections, identification and treatment of malnutrition in babies and toddlers including practical advice to mothers and last but not least school health.

The clinical workflow organization was another student’s interest. Building a Nurses workgroup one student re-organized the workflow of the weekly cleaning routines. In the end the nurses had a more effective workplan, saved a lot of time and gained more leisure.

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Because of the generous project funding by the Else-Kröner-Fresenius Stiftung we were able to carry out all project parts beginning from the development to implementation up to the evaluation of the project. Additionally we could finance the basis of a medical nursing library at the clinic in order to support self directed learning.

Finally I would like to thank the Förderverein help-myanmar for its generous and ongoing support during the whole project which facilitated the student’s stay at the PDO. Win Aung and his team were at disposal at any time. In addition Moe Moe guaranteed that the students got her very good Myanmar lunch regularly which was also financed by the Else-Kröner-Fresenius Stiftung.

Anyway, this project indirectly contributed a small but important part to improve a little bit the medical and health situation of students, staff and inhabitants of the township. We hope that we will be able to continue with a second project in order to build on what has been already learned by the nice and sympathetic Nurses of the clinic.

Prof. Dr. Martha Meyer