IntraHealth International

Our commitment: IntraHealth is a global champion for health workers. We have pledged to double our impact between 2011 and 2015 to ensure that more health workers are present, ready, connected, and safe. Mission: IntraHealth empowers health workers to better serve communities in need around the world. We foster local solutions to health care challenges by improving health worker performance, strengthening health systems, harnessing technology, and leveraging partnerships. ...
Aug 25, 2014

The Impact of Training Nursing Students

The nursing students at Alkan Health Science College began the third quarter of their second year this July and have continued pursuing their studies in areas of predetermined key competencies to improve the nursing skills they have already begun to develop. As we follow their studies, it is important to remember the impact these scholarships are having not just on the lives of these six students, but also in the communities they will serve.

Ethiopia is one of the most populated countries in Africa, second only to Nigeria. Providing healthcare to such a large and continuously growing population is especially challenging. In addition to being densely populated, Ethiopia is also a mountainous country which makes reaching rural areas extremely difficult. However, each of these six students will bring back their advanced skills to a rural community in Ethiopia, and serve a population that otherwise would not have access to basic health care.

The rapidly growing population highlights particularly the importance of training more nurses and midwives to be skilled birth attendants. This is one of the key competency areas these students are studying through hands-on training in the skills laboratory to learn the process of labor and listen to classroom lectures on the female reproductive system. Eyerus reflects on the community and the role she will play as she practices the skills she’s learned in child and maternal health at nearby health center: “I have an interest to be part of the community fight[ing] to reduce the death of mothers and babies.”

Thank you to Eyerus, and the five other nursing students: Almaz, Hawa, Fatuma, Tsehay, and Haymanot for continuing to share your hard work and learning experiences with us. To our donors, thank you for supporting these students and the thousands of people they will one day serve. Together we can build a healthier world.

Jul 29, 2014

In Service Training for Practicing Nurses

In addition to helping those wishing to pursue an education in health, The Afya Elimu Fund also helps those who wish to further their training; nurses like Phyllis.

Phyllis has worked at the Tenwek Hospital’s Continuing Care Clinic (CCC) for most of her nursing career, but she was not always trained in the more specialized area of adult antiretroviral therapy, or the ability to administer HIV medications, and this made her job more difficult. Before the training, there were times Phyllis struggled to help patients understand the more technically complex issues associated with HIV, which frustrated her greatly. One such issue was when a patient was not responding well to treatment. “I have had an experience where a patient comes and tells you ‘I have done everything you told me but my situation is not improving.’ It made me sad.”

HIV/AIDS is one of the greatest health challenges Kenyans face. According to UNAIDS, over 1,600,000 (approximately 6% of the population) Kenyans are living with HIV, most of whom are highly dependent on antiretroviral therapy. By increasing the number of health workers trained in antiretroviral treatment, the number of those receiving medication will greatly increase.

Since receiving additional in-service training, Phyllis now has a different experience as she attends to the numerous clients who visit her clinic every day. “The knowledge I gained has really helped me serve the clients better. I now have a lot of confidence as I serve my clients because I have the knowledge that I need.”

Phyllis says one of the most helpful things she learned at the training is how to monitor patients’ progress and quickly identify the causes of health concerns.

“I am now able to detect any failures in the patient and diagnose the cause. This is something I could not do before. It has made my clients happy.”

Thank you to our donors who support the Afya Elimu Fund and provide both new and continued training to healthworkers in Kenya.  Together, we can create a healthier world.

May 6, 2014

Learning New Skills in Nursing

At ALKAN Health Science College nursing students study a curriculum built around the key competencies needed to become effective nurses in their communities, just like students attending nurse training programs in the United States. We asked our students at ALKAN Health Science College about the skills they are learning this year, and which key competency areas they find most interesting. Here’s what they had to say.

Almaz talked about the competency area of implementing basic nursing care—the backbone of all nursing. She is studying how to manage patient safety and comfort and how to help immobile clients with feeding and grooming. She has been mastering these skills by attending class, practicing in the skills laboratory, and collaborating with other health team members. Almaz says it’s important to learn “the knowledge and skills required to contribute to the nursing care of clients in a range of health environments.”

Fatuma highlighted learning about how to administer a wide range of medications. This semester, she is studying pharmacology and how different drugs treat and affect systems in the body. For example, while learning about medications that affect the nervous system, Fatuma studied the drug compounds and effects and then learned how to administer dosage accurately in the skills laboratory.

Hawa was most interested in basic wound care and developing a nursing care plan for her clients. She enjoys practicing in the skills laboratory, particularly skills related to preventing infections.

Tsehay, Eyerus, and Haymanot all pointed to learning how to provide maternal and newborn health care. “For me, there is nothing that gave satisfaction more than providing care and support to the mothers and babies,” reflects Eyerus. “I want to be part of the community that is fighting to reduce the deaths of mothers and babies.” The students have been studying the female reproductive system and fetal development in class. In the skills lab, they practice antenatal care, delivery and postnatal care for both mothers and babies.

To the nursing students at ALKAN, thank you for sharing your interests with us! We enjoy hearing stories coming from Ethiopia about your journey to become nurses. To our donors, we thank you for your continued support and your commitment to championing frontline health workers through this project. We look forward to sharing more stories about our students soon.

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