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Reading: Evaluation of Computer-Based Training for Health Workers in Echocardiography for RHD

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Original Research

Evaluation of Computer-Based Training for Health Workers in Echocardiography for RHD

Authors:

Daniel Engelman ,

Department of Paediatrics, Centre for International Child Health, University of Melbourne, Melbourne; Group A Streptococcal Research, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Melbourne, AU
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Emmy Okello,

Uganda Heart Institute, Mulago National Referral Hospital, Makerere University, Kampala, UG
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Andrea Beaton,

Department of Cardiology, Children's National Health System, Washington, DC, US
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Gary Selnow,

Marian Wright Edelman Institute, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA; WiRED International, San Francisco, CA, US
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Bo Remenyi,

Global and Tropical Health, Menzies School of Health Research, Darwin, AU
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Caroline Watson,

Department of Haematology, Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust, Oxford, GB
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Chris T. Longenecker,

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, OH; University Hospitals Harrington Heart and Vascular Institute, Cleveland, OH, US
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Craig Sable,

Department of Cardiology, Children's National Health System, Washington, DC, US
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Andrew C. Steer

Group A Streptococcal Research, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Melbourne, AU
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Abstract

Background: The implementation of screening for rheumatic heart disease at a population-scale would require a considerable increase in human resources. Training nonexpert staff in echocardiography requires appropriate methods and materials.

Objectives: This pre/post study aims to measure the change in the knowledge and confidence of a group of health workers after a computer-assisted training intervention in basic echocardiography for rheumatic heart disease.

Methods: A syllabus of self-guided, computer-based modules to train nonexpert health workers in basic echocardiography for rheumatic heart disease was developed. Thirty-eight health workers from Uganda participated in the training. Using a pre/post design, identical test instruments were administered before and after the training intervention, assessing the knowledge (using multiple-choice questions) and confidence (using Likert scale questions) in clinical science and echocardiography.

Results: The mean total score on knowledge tests rose from 44.8% to 85.4% (mean difference: 40.6%, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 35.4% to 45.8%), with strong evidence for an increase in scores across all knowledge theme areas (p < 0.001). Increased confidence with each key aspect was reported, and there was strong evidence for an increase in the mean score for confidence scales in clinical science (difference: 7.1, 95% CI: 6.2 to 8.0; p < 0.001) and echocardiography (difference: 18.3, 95% CI: 16.6 to 20.0; p < 0.001).

Conclusions: The training program was effective at increasing knowledge and confidence for basic echocardiography in nonexpert health workers. Use of computer-assisted learning may reduce the human resource requirements for training staff in echocardiography.

Highlights

  • A computer-based teaching program in basic echocardiography and RHD was developed.
  • Knowledge and confidence of health workers increased after the training.
  • Feedback from participants was strongly positive.
  • The training package may facilitate learning in resource-limited settings.
How to Cite: Engelman D, Okello E, Beaton A, Selnow G, Remenyi B, Watson C, et al.. Evaluation of Computer-Based Training for Health Workers in Echocardiography for RHD. Global Heart. 2017;12(1):17–23. DOI: http://doi.org/10.1016/j.gheart.2015.12.001
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Published on 01 Mar 2017.
Peer Reviewed

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