The Permanent Secretary Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology, Dr. Leonard Akwilapo commended Transforming Health Professional Education (THET) project initiatives to improve the quality of health professions education and therefore the quality of graduates in Tanzania.
Speaking during the opening of THET project’s first 2-day Stakeholders’ Meeting held on the 21st to 22nd February 2019 at MUHAS, the PS said this is a very important initiative, which in principle seeks to improve health care services provided to the people of this country.
Dr. Akwilapo further recalled when His Excellence Dr. John Joseph Pombe Magufuli took office as President of the fifth phase Government and directed all professionals to focus their efforts on providing services to the rural communities where most of our poor citizens reside. “I note that this meeting and its outcomes is the kind of effort that would address those concerns”, he added.
THET is a consortium of three health professional training institutions from Tanzania, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS), Catholic University of Health and Allied Sciences (CUHAS) and Kilimanjaro Christian College Medical University College (KCMUCo), and two United States-based universities, Duke University and University of California and San Francisco.
The aim of THET is to transform the educational environment for doctors and nurses in Tanzania so that they can deliver quality care for improved health outcomes of all people including marginalized communities and those with HIV/AIDS. To achieve its objectives, THET organized a stakeholder engagement meeting to ensure full participation and involvement of key stakeholders from the beginning of the project to pave way for sustainable decision- making process.
The Permanent Secretary further urged all Health Higher Learning Institutions in the country to join and support this initiative, which he said will go a long way to address the challenges that TCU and Professional Councils have been grappling with in recent years. He also urged professional Councils to support this initiative and ensure that the efforts will eventually bear fruits and enable the country to train highly qualified and fit-for-purpose health professionals. In his welcoming remarks, the MUHAS Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Andrea Pembe emphasized that this is a very unique occasion in which stakeholders of higher learning health training institutions are meeting to discuss issues regarding their core business of teaching and learning. “It is our expectation that we are going to share our experiences through papers that will be presented by different speakers and in discussions that will take place during the next two days”, he added.