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Improving management skills of MCH professionals
The ‘Improvement of Mother and Child Health Services in Uzbekistan’ Phase II project, implemented by UNICEF and the Ministry of Health, and co-financed by the European Union, aims to improve the quality of health care services provided to children and their families, by developing standards, providing protocol quality tools, and building the capacities of medical professionals. Programmes in this field that are well planned and managed are more likely to improve intervention coverage and quality of services, and help make further progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals 4 and 5.
From the 14th to the 17th of October, representatives from the Ministry of Health, and national and regional-level health managers, attended a training workshop organised by WHO on the e-learning training tool ‘Management of Programs to Improve Maternal and Child Health’. The tool has been developed by WHO, and Uzbekistan is the first country wh ere the new program is being tested. The training served to provide an overview of the tool while suggesting possible adaptations to Uzbekistan’s requirements, while also simultaneously improving the programme management abilities of participating Mother and Child Health managers.
“As health managers we are working to achieve certain goals and fulfil objectives of the Mother and Child Health programs, and for this purpose we need to be able to plan properly and adequately,” said Chief Physician of the Republican Children’s Multi-profile Medical Centre Alima Matkarimova. “We need to manage finances spent on medicines, to support use of treatment algorithms, and in the future, to manage supervision visits. This is what this workshop is teaching us.”
The workshop was not only a valuable experience for health managers, but also for academicians responsible for undertaking postgraduate professional development of current health managers. The input of these professors, especially in their suggestions for adapting the training modules, was essential.
“My goal in participating here is to institutionalise this tool. In addition to adding this course to our everyday curriculum, we also have a distance education course, and our plan is to include this training module into our two modes of teaching,” said Ms. Lobar Mirvarisova, Associate Professor of the Teaching Department of the Health Care Organization and Management, of the Tashkent Institute for Postgraduate Medical Education.
“The tools are designed for global use and can be adapted to any country. As far as Uzbekistan is concerned, the most important modification would be translating the content into the Uzbek language.”
WHO has provided technical assistance for the implementation of the ‘Institutional strengthening’ component of the project. Through this component the skills and operational capacity of the Ministry of Health at national, regional and district levels will be enhanced, in order to effectively support the health reform process regarding Mother and Child health services, in accordance with international standards.