The following blog post was written by Solomiya Teterichko, the Medical Brigades Program Advisor in Ghana. This blog was originally featured on her personal blog which documents her experiences and personal perspectives on living and working in Ghana. To check out her blog, visit: http://cultureandsciencearoundtheworld.wordpress.com/blog/
On March 10th, 2012 Global Medical Brigades Ghana hosted its first Seasonal Health Care Professional Workshop. A day during which professionals could better familiarize themselves with the work that Global Brigades does through all its programs and countries. In return the medical team can receive feedback from a group of professionals who allow our medical programs to run smoothly.
What we want is to involve our in-country health care professionals in the development of our medical program. Having worked with these talented professionals over the past 9 months, we are aware that there is constructive criticism that can be taken to better the effectiveness of services we provide to the Mfatseman District. It is now time to consolidate these ideas and hear them out in an official setting.
The workshop began with a short presentation of the Global Brigades organization as a set of multidisciplinary programs intertwined to provide holistic care to under-resourced communities. For many in the room, this was the first time that the history and rapid growth of the organization was voiced.
Following discussions included: updates to the upcoming brigade season, new policies and the growth of brigade groups. Health care professionals then had the opportunity to meet the new seasonal medical coordinators and open the table up for general concerns, questions and criticisms.
During this general discussion health care professionals gave input on improving our referral program and follow-up visits, promoting national health insurance in the communities, malaria screening and our data informatics system. Surveys and testimonial requests were handed out at the end of the discussion. The day concluded with a dinner at Manna Heights Hotel during which we had the opportunity to converse with professionals on a more personal level and ask questions that have been building up on post-it notes and through emails.
I’m excited to finally have had the opportunity to get many of our local health care professionals in one room. Much of our medical program relies on the support of in-country organizations and professionals. I can only see these meetings grow in attendance and productivity in the near future.
A FEW COMMON SUGGESTIONS AND COMMENTS About seasonal HCP workshops: “Insightful and exciting” “Looking forward for better partnership in the future” Future goals: “Pre-brigade meeting with in-country staff” “Closer collaboration with foreign professionals, especially outside brigade season”