An international, case-based, distance-learning collaboration between the UK and Somaliland using a real-time clinical education website

John Radcliffe Hospital, Headley Way, Headington, Oxford, UK.
Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare (Impact Factor: 1.54). 05/2010; 16(4):181-4. DOI: 10.1258/jtt.2010.004004
Source: PubMed


We established a medical education website to deliver real-time, clinical case-based education to sites in Somaliland from the UK. The website was based on a web 2.0 social networking concept in order to recreate, as nearly as possible, the clinical bedside teaching experience. A survey showed that medical students in Somaliland had sufficient computer access to exploit the website. Teaching began in December 2008 and the teaching programme has developed into a regular weekly teaching session involving up to seven different student groups in Somaliland at different locations. As well as north-south teaching, the website has been employed to support a study module in London. Small groups of UK-based medical students have been partnered with intern tutors in Somaliland. Forty UK students have taken part in this teaching, which is now in its second year. Feedback from those involved has demonstrated that a collaboration in which both north-south and south-north teaching occurs can strengthen partnerships in which both parties contribute and benefit.

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    • "As an MHR, I worked as an assistant lecturer in psychiatry and coordinated the exams in mental health. I also became involved in initiatives for tele-learning (Finlayson et al., 2010). My experiences as an MHR have made me an advocate for mental health care in Somaliland. "
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: To examine patterns of amputation (all levels) among veterans who were identified as at-risk and to examine factors that predict greater risks for a major (below-knee, above-knee) amputation. Design: Database approach, secondary data analysis. Setting: Veterans Affairs medical centers (VAMCs). Participants: 451,824 were selected if they had diagnoses of diabetes mellitus or peripheral vascular disease, and were at-risk for lower-extremity amputation. These patients were followed for 4 years (1997–2000) to determine the occurrence of amputation. Interventions: Not applicable. Main Outcome Measures: Differences in frequency and level of amputation were assessed among 132 VAMCs with different Preservation of Amputation Care and Treatment (PACT) rankings. Regression techniques were used to identify factors associated with increased risk. Results: Over the 4-year period, 10,258 patients had at least 1 amputation (2.3%). Highly ranked VAMCs had greater amputation rates and performed more above-knee amputations than less well ranked VAMCs. Factors that increase risk for a major amputation include race, skin ulcers, gangrene, and prior amputation. Conclusion: High-PACT VAMCs are often located in an urban setting, affiliated with academic medical programs, and have higher volume of patients. Higher amputation rate at high-PACT facilities may reflect a movement toward centers of excellence for prevention of and treatment for lower-extremity amputations.
    Full-text · Dataset · Mar 2013
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    • "As an MHR, I worked as an assistant lecturer in psychiatry and coordinated the exams in mental health. I also became involved in initiatives for tele-learning (Finlayson et al., 2010). My experiences as an MHR have made me an advocate for mental health care in Somaliland. "
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    ABSTRACT: The author of this personal re£ection is a junior doctor from Somaliland, a country that has su¡ered from civil war. He studied medicine there, and became interested in mental health care.This aspect of heath care is among the most neglected in the horn of Africa. However, with the support of British psychiatrists, the author has established educational training in psychiatry. He has also subsequently initiated mental health services in his hometown of Borama.Within a few years, an inpatient psychia-tric unit, an outpatient department and community mental health outreach were also created. Key to his success was intensive cooperation and collaboration with the community, resulting in broad support for mental health programmes. He has also attempted to collaborate with traditional healers, but remains hesitant of their role.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2012 · Intervention
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    • "Our pilot results suggested that Somaliland, a country with a poorly developed IT infrastructure, could support a low bandwidth, long-distance, instant text-based teaching system.2 We have since developed MedicineAfrica to the point where it provides an established programme of weekly tutorials for all final year medical students and all newly qualified doctors in Somaliland in Medicine, Surgery, Psychiatry, Paediatrics and Obstetrics. "
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    ABSTRACT: To evaluate the feasibility of providing regular, live, text-based teaching to medical students and junior doctors in Somaliland using a dedicated case-based medical education website ( Review of MedicineAfrica database for details of teaching sessions held in Somaliland from December 2008-October 2010 and evaluation of user experiences through focus groups. King's College Hospital, London, UK and Ahmoud University, Borama, Somaliland. Final year medical students, newly graduated interns and second year interns at Ahmoud University, Borama, Somaliland. Qualitative and quantitative user rating of online case-based tutorials in the context of pre-existing educational opportunities available to them. Regular online teaching sessions are received enthusiastically by students and junior doctors and are reported to improve their clinical practice. Despite technological limitations in Somaliland, a live text-based teaching service can be delivered effectively and streamlined with local curricula. This represents an alternative to traditional static teaching methodologies currently used in international medical education.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2012
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