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Graduates’ perceptions of prosthetic and orthotic education and clinical practice in Tanzania and Malawi

Magnusson, Lina LU ; Ahlström, Gerd LU and Shangali, Harold (2016) FATO 8 th International Congress in 2016
Abstract
Background: Maintaining and improving the quality of prosthetics and orthotics education at the Tanzania Training Centre for Orthopaedic Technologists is essential for the provision of appropriate prosthetics and orthotics services in African countries.

Aim: To describe how Tanzanian and Malawian graduates’ of the Diploma in Orthopaedic Technology perceive their education and how it could be improved or supplemented to facilitate clinical practice of graduates.

Methods: Nineteen graduates from the diploma course in orthopaedic technology were interviewed in Tanzania and Malawi. Data were transcribed and a qualitative phenomenographic analysis was applied to the data.

Results: Seven descriptive categories... (More)
Background: Maintaining and improving the quality of prosthetics and orthotics education at the Tanzania Training Centre for Orthopaedic Technologists is essential for the provision of appropriate prosthetics and orthotics services in African countries.

Aim: To describe how Tanzanian and Malawian graduates’ of the Diploma in Orthopaedic Technology perceive their education and how it could be improved or supplemented to facilitate clinical practice of graduates.

Methods: Nineteen graduates from the diploma course in orthopaedic technology were interviewed in Tanzania and Malawi. Data were transcribed and a qualitative phenomenographic analysis was applied to the data.

Results: Seven descriptive categories emerged, namely varied awareness of the profession before starting education, well-equipped teaching facilities, aspects lacking in the learning context, need for changes in the curriculum, enabling people to walk is motivating, obstacles in working conditions and the need for continuous professional development. All participants perceived possible improvements to the content and learning environment.

Discussion: The study can contribute to the evidence base for review of the international guidelines for training personnel in developing countries for prosthetics and orthotics services. The major changes to the curriculum suggested were to reduce the time spent on learning to work with metal and wood and to focus more on advanced prosthetic and orthotic technology. The technology used in low-income countries has changed in Malawi and Tanzania, where polypropylene technology is commonly used. However, this development is dependent on the provision of components by the International Committee of the Red Cross or similar provisions to Africa. Sustainability needs to be carefully considered while recommending changes to the curriculum.

Conclusions: Prosthetic and orthotic education can be better provided by modifying the content of the diploma program by dedicating more time to the clinical management of different patient groups and applied biomechanics as well as reducing the program content focusing on technical aspects of prosthetic and orthotic practice. Graduates were not prepared for the rural working conditions and the graduates desired continued training.
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to conference
publication status
unpublished
subject
keywords
prosthetic , orthotic education , Malawi, Tanzania
conference name
FATO 8 th International Congress in 2016
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
b509a2a3-3424-41d8-878d-7d8774fd87d1
date added to LUP
2016-06-14 10:43:54
date last changed
2016-06-29 08:19:37
@misc{b509a2a3-3424-41d8-878d-7d8774fd87d1,
  abstract     = {Background: Maintaining and improving the quality of prosthetics and orthotics education at the Tanzania Training Centre for Orthopaedic Technologists is essential for the provision of appropriate prosthetics and orthotics services in African countries. <br/><br/>Aim: To describe how Tanzanian and Malawian graduates’ of the Diploma in Orthopaedic Technology perceive their education and how it could be improved or supplemented to facilitate clinical practice of graduates. <br/><br/>Methods: Nineteen graduates from the diploma course in orthopaedic technology were interviewed in Tanzania and Malawi. Data were transcribed and a qualitative phenomenographic analysis was applied to the data. <br/><br/>Results: Seven descriptive categories emerged, namely varied awareness of the profession before starting education, well-equipped teaching facilities, aspects lacking in the learning context, need for changes in the curriculum, enabling people to walk is motivating, obstacles in working conditions and the need for continuous professional development. All participants perceived possible improvements to the content and learning environment. <br/><br/>Discussion: The study can contribute to the evidence base for review of the international guidelines for training personnel in developing countries for prosthetics and orthotics services. The major changes to the curriculum suggested were to reduce the time spent on learning to work with metal and wood and to focus more on advanced prosthetic and orthotic technology. The technology used in low-income countries has changed in Malawi and Tanzania, where polypropylene technology is commonly used. However, this development is dependent on the provision of components by the International Committee of the Red Cross or similar provisions to Africa. Sustainability needs to be carefully considered while recommending changes to the curriculum. <br/><br/>Conclusions: Prosthetic and orthotic education can be better provided by modifying the content of the diploma program by dedicating more time to the clinical management of different patient groups and applied biomechanics as well as reducing the program content focusing on technical aspects of prosthetic and orthotic practice. Graduates were not prepared for the rural working conditions and the graduates desired continued training.<br/>},
  author       = {Magnusson, Lina and Ahlström, Gerd and Shangali, Harold},
  keyword      = {prosthetic ,orthotic education ,Malawi,Tanzania},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {08},
  title        = {Graduates’ perceptions of prosthetic and orthotic education and clinical practice in Tanzania and Malawi},
  year         = {2016},
}