On-going Training of trainers on lab techniques in Cambodia


November 30, 2021
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Training of trainers on maintenance and calibration continued in Cambodia

Initially it was planned to deliver the training of trainers over one-week but the BMLS proposed to use a more participative approach initiated by the Diagnostic Microbiology Development Program (DMDP).

The idea is not to provide another standard curriculum but to customize training tools more appropriate to laboratories specific needs. Additionally, this methodology should ensure better trainers’ ownership of the training materials.

For this reason the training of trainers will be delivered over 2-3 months in the form of several 2-hour sessions to review, adapt and improve the modules.

The SEALAB in-service training curriculum is composed of 13 modules selected by the five participating hospitals by rating priorities from an extensive list of modules provided by the Merieux Foundation.

The training of trainers on maintenance and calibration has already been completed by the maintenance department of the Institut Pasteur in Cambodia. The lab techniques started with the modules on hematology and the module on management of inconsistent testing results. This series of exchanges and discussions between technical experts and selected trainers had already started in early November and to date eight virtual sessions have been organized.

Lea Martin, technical referent at the Merieux Foundation, drafted the modules and conducted the sessions in collaboration with Dr. Mardy Sek, the Head of SEALAB project in Cambodia. The BMLS, the Merieux Foundation and DMDP jointly identified the lab professionals to participate in the training of trainers by alalyzing the technical experience and capacity to deliver training. Thus, five heads of unit at Kossamak hospital and at the National Pediatric Hospital were selected to be trainers for these topics.

In practice, the trainer group defines clear training objectives for each topic and a correlated training plan. All existing training materials are reviewed and enriched with contributions form the trainers’ experience and their work constraints. Carefull attention was given to design a combined training with theoretical knowledge and practical exercises for preparing the ground for a fruitful bench training.

These first sessions highlighted that Internal Quality Control is a main concern and the supply of test kits can be ad hoc leading to tests kits not being available or out of date. IQC is not always continuous due to programmatic testing, ad hoc testing or stockouts. In this context, it has been decided to use the IQC as a guiding tool in the exercises and bench training. The trainers will take the opportunity of the SEALAB in-service training program to stress the importance of regular IQC and to re-define the quality assurance processes.

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