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Singapore Helps Improve Physiotherapy Education in Laos
Singaporean President Tony Tan visits the Faculty of Medical Technology at the University of Health Sciences last Friday
January 18th, 2017 | 09:32 AM | 822 views
More than 160,000 people in Laos have some form of disability according to the 4th Population and Housing Census 2015 conducted by the Lao Statistics Bureau.
Medical rehabilitative care for such persons, provided by specialized physiotherapists and allied health professionals, is crucial for recovery.
“In response to the need for trained medical rehabilitative care specialists, Singaporeans and Lao people came together to design a programme to raise the standard of physiotherapy education in Laos,” said Prof Chua Yeow Leng, Group Director, International Collaboration Office, Singapore Health Services (SingHealth)
Entitled “The Physiotherapy Education Upgrade Project,” this collaborative effort will augment the curriculum and increase the Faculty of Medical Technology at the University of Health Sciences Bachelor’s programme in Physiotherapy, according to Prof Chua Yeow Leng.
“It will also equip the Faculty of Medical Technology at the University of Health Sciences’ teaching faculty with the skills and knowledge to deliver the enhanced curriculum and increase the awareness of updated physiotherapy methods and treatments among physiotherapists in Laos,” added Prof Chua.
“A team from Singapore comprising 36 physiotherapists from various institutions under Singhealth, Singapore’s largest healthcare group, will carry out a series of training workshops, lectures and symposiums for their Lao counterparts consisting of practicing physiotherapists, rehabilitation nurses and orthopedic doctors from the faculty and selected NGOs and hospitals in the Vientiane Capital area,” said Ms Jean Tan, Executive Director of the Singapore International Foundation.
“By the end of the project in 2018, the programme’s curriculum will be substantially enhanced with the latest physiotherapy and pedagogical methods. In addition, a core group of 25 Lao people ‘Master Trainers’ will be selected and equipped with the skills and knowledge to deliver the enhanced curriculum, said Ms Jean Tan.
“This team of ‘Master Trainers’ will go on to train at least 30 physiotherapy students per year. Upon graduation, each of these 30 physiotherapists will treat at least 10 patients per month, enabling around 3,600 patients a year to regain some level of physical functioning to reintegrate back into society,” added Ms Jean Tan
Since the programme was launched in 2016, SinHealth’s medical volunteers under SIF’s Singapore International Volunteers programme have conducted four training workshops and successfully trained 136 Lao professionals. They also conducted a symposium on “Evidence-based Rehabilitation” to raise awareness of rehabilitative care among Lao healthcare communities in August 2016.
courtesy of KPL NEWS AGENCY
by Soukthavy Thephavong
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