A nurse in Kampala, Uganda, examines a young patient. The Advanced Nursing Studies programme in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda has been graduating diploma and BScN degree nurses since 2002. Developed at the request of nursing leaders and the respective governments, the programme offers continuing and higher education to working nurses, allowing them to remain at their workplaces while pursuing professional development.
Photo: AKDN/Jean-Luc RayThe effectiveness of healthcare management and delivery is closely linked to the availability and quality of nursing. Yet in many places, there is little investment in the in-service support and training of nurses.
Without recognition and a clear career path, many nurses leave their countries to take up opportunities overseas.
To arrest this drain of talent, the Aga Khan University (AKU) is implementing a large-scale in-service training programme designed to upgrade nursing skills across the East African region.
“I have long felt the enhancement of the nursing profession to be absolutely critical to the improvement of health care in the developing world, and the Islamic world. The way forward was to professionalise, to institutionalise, and to dignify this great profession.”
Speech by His Highness the Aga Khan at the Archon Award Ceremony of Sigma Theta Tau International, Copenhagen, Denmark
7 June 2001This innovative, part-time study programme allows practising nurses to learn and apply the new skills needed to improve the management and quality of patient care.
At the same time, the programme enables the nurses to accumulate academic credits needed for career advancement. Since 2006, all three East African countries have provided distance learning via on-line modules, doubling enrolment figures as working nurses take advantage of remote learning possibilities.
Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of this programme is that over 85 percent of its graduates stay in their countries.
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