Scheme to expand Malawi’s health experts

Clinicians and e-learning experts in Scotland are helping Malawian universities address a shortage of doctors and nurses.

Experts at the University of Edinburgh are working with the University of Malawi to develop a new medical curriculum incorporating online teaching resources to help train more medical students in Malawi.

Opening screenshot from a patient suffering car-crash injuries

Online resources

The initiative includes practical workshops to equip teaching staff to use online materials to train future generations of medics, with staff passing online teaching skills onto colleagues.

The online resources will also help address teacher shortages in Malawi affecting key specialities such as maternal health, cardiology and neurology.

They will provide learning support to students in addition to teaching given in lectures.

Training new doctors

As well as looking at undergraduate training of medics, there will also be a focus on continuing professional development for Malawian medical graduates.

Courses for graduates will cover surgical skills, general medicine, paediatrics, obstetrics, gynaecology and anaesthesia.

These resources will be accessible through a number of different ways, including the internet, CD-ROMS or mobiles.

This initiative will help build up resources within Malawi to train new generations of doctors and other healthcare professionals. Working together we can help provide the skills and knowledge to build up teaching capacity and ensure that the process is sustainable.

Professor David DewhurstDirector of learning technology

The scheme is funded by the Scottish Government International Development Fund.

It follows an earlier collaboration between the University of Edinburgh, the University of Malawi and Malawi’s Colleges of Nursing and Health Sciences.

This focused on creating virtual patients for use in online teaching.