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TRAINING: Improving local healthcare practitioners’ skills in vascular ultrasound

Feb. 2, 2024 9:00
TRAINING: Improving local healthcare practitioners’ skills in vascular ultrasound
Healthcare professionals being taken through a practical exercise during the training. Photo Credit: St. Francis Regional Referral Hospital (SFRRH)

Today, local healthcare professionals completed a five-day training in vascular ultrasound and surgery held at the St. Francis Regional Referral Hospital (SFRRH) in Ifakara. The course was initiated by Ifakara Health Institute, SFRRH, the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, the University Hospital of Basel, and the Medical Council of Tanganyika (MCT). 

This was the third MCT-approved Vascular Ultrasound and Vascular Surgery course and aimed to introduce and refresh ultrasound techniques and skills for clinicians who practice diagnostic ultrasound in daily clinical work, acquainting them with new skills in vascular ultrasound in alignment with international guidelines.

This training was organized by a team led by Dr. Martin Rohacek and Dr. Andrew Katende from the Heart and Lung Clinic located in SFRRH. This year’s training course featured guidance from the expert Dr. Markus Aschwanden, a board-certified board-certified Angiologist, co-head of the Department of Angiology, University Hospital Basel, Switzerland, together with local experts, Dr. Rohacek, a physician and certified Instructor in Point of care – and abdominal ultrasound, echocardiography, and vascular ultrasound, and Dr. Victor Myovela, an assistant radiologist at the SFRRH, Ifakara with over 10 years’ experience.

Speaking ahead of the training, Dr. Rohacek emphasized the inclusivity of the course and said that the course welcomes healthcare personnel from any healthcare facility urging interested participants to “seize this opportunity to refine their vascular ultrasound skills."

The week-long training involved 15 participants who were offered a comprehensive learning experience in vascular ultrasound, focusing on practical, hands-on teaching methods. Participants included radiologists, surgeons, and medical doctors from different facilities in Tanzania

This training initiative, which began in 2017, represents a series of Medical Council of Tanganyika (MCT) accredited courses covering abdominal ultrasound, point-of-care ultrasound, echocardiography, and vascular ultrasound and vascular surgery at SFRRH whose overall aim is to train local healthcare workers with relevant hands-on medical skills and ultrasound to improve care for patients in rural Tanzania.

The collaboration involves Ifakara Health Institute, SFRRH, Swiss TPH, Switzerland, Ultrasound Learning Center Hirslanden in Züurich, Switzerland, the European Federation of Societies for Ultrasound in Medicine (EFSUMB), the University Hospital Basel, Basel, in Switzerland, and Kantonsspital Aarau, Aarau, Switzerland.