An online workshop on developing curriculum for a 9-month course in occupational therapy (OT) was successfully organized by the Medical Committee Netherlands-Vietnam (MCNV) and the Hue University of Medicine and Pharmacy (Hue UMP).

Over 30 participants attended the workshop, including representatives from the Vietnam Rehabilitation Association; the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Center for Creative Initiatives in Health and Population (CCIHP), the Center for Community Health Research and Development (CCRD); Hue UMP; Health Department of Thua Thien Hue Province, Thua Thien Hue Provincial Rehabilitation Hospital and Phu Vang District Health Center.

The Project “Improving the quality of life of persons with disabilities in provinces heavily sprayed with agent orange” (Inclusion Project) is funded by USAID, with the managing agency being the National Action Centre for Toxic Chemicals and Environmental Treatment (NACCET) under Chemical Command, the Ministry of Defense. CCIHP, CCRD are Prime Awardees and MCNV is one of the sub-awardees, taking responsibility of implementing activities related to rehabilitation manpower enhancement in 8 provinces, including: Quang Tri, Thua Thien Hue, Quang Nam, Kon Tum, Binh Đinh, Binh Phuoc, Tay Ninh and Dong Nai. 

In order to accomplish the objective entitled ‘To implement medium-term training to provide new staff participating in rehab professional activities‘, MCNV will cooperate with several national-level universities to implement a series of training activities, including the upcoming 9-month OT course, which will be conducted in collaboration with Hue UMP.

Speaking at the workshop, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nguyen Minh Tam, Vice Principal of Hue UMP affirmed the commitment to accompanying MCNV in effectively conducting the 9-month OT course, while continuing the cooperation with the organization in implementing other significant training activities to improve the quality of rehabilitation services.

To give the participants an overview of the training course, at the workshop, MD. Pham Dung, MCNV Country Director presented to the participants the scientific and professional approach in adapting the 12-month training course curriculum (earlier approved in ‘Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Services Supporting Children with Intellectual and Developmental disabilities to thrive’ (I-THRIVE)’ project into the 9-month training course curriculum in OT.

Based on online surveys, in-depth interviews and study of available materials, MCNV has proposed an expected competency framework for the 9-month training. According to this framework, there will be some deletion, shortenings or supplementation of suitable training contents.

The outline of the 9-month training course was subsequently presented by MD. Ha Chan Nhan, Head of Rehabilitation Department, Hue UMP and discussed at the workshop.

Tentatively, after synthesizing ideas from the workshop participants, Hue UMP and MCNV will adapt the outline and detailed training curriculum, submitting to the Science Council of Hue UMP for appraisal and approval in preparation for the enrollment and training in April, 2022./.