A 9-month course in Occupational Therapy (OT) was jointly launched by MCNV and Hue University of Medicine and Pharmacy (UMP) on May 16th, 2022 in Hue City (Thua Thien – Hue province).

The launching ceremony was attended by representatives of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID); Board of Directors of Hue UMP; lecturers and 34 trainees who are nurses, rehabilitation technicians and physicians working in hospitals and health facilities in the provinces of Thua Thien – Hue, Quang Tri, Quang Nam, Kon Tum and Binh Dinh.

Prof. PhD. Nguyen Vu Quoc Huy, Rector of Hue UMP speaks at the launching ceremony

The course is part of the Inclusion 1&2 projects, sponsored by USAID with the overall objective of improving the quality of life of people with disabilities (PwDs). The project’s managing agency is the National Action Centre for Toxic Chemicals and Environmental Treatment (NACCET) under the Chemical Command, the Ministry of Defense. Center for Creative Initiatives in Health and Population (CCIHP) and Center for Community Health Research and Development (CCRD) are two management awardees of Inclusion 1&2 projects.

As the implemention awardee, MCNV works to achieve the objective of developing the new manpower to participate in the profession of rehabilitation.

Speaking at the launching ceremony, Prof. PhD. Nguyen Vu Quoc Huy, Rector of Hue UMP, expressed his appreciation for the substantial support of the Projects for Hue UMP in general and for the Department of Rehabilitation in particular in building capacity, developing expertise and providing necessary infrastructure for clinical practice of OT courses.

Prof. PhD. Nguyen Vu Quoc Huy also emphasized the importance of OT in the multidisciplinary rehabilitation model, along with other therapies such as physical therapy (PT), speech and language therapy, psychotherapy, nursing care as well as other specialties in improving health and quality of life of PwDs.

On behalf of the project management and implementation awardees, MSc.MD. Pham Dung, Country Director of MCNV Vietnam noted the important role of this 9-month training course and the indispensable contributions of Hue UMP and the trainees.

MSc.MD. Pham Dung, MCNV Country Director speaks at the launching ceremony.

In his speech, MSc.MD. Pham Dung highlighted the significance of the course to the improvement of local rehabilitation system. The trainees were among the first receiving OT training in Vietnam. MCNV and local health facility leaders deeply believe in the trainees’ efforts to successfully complete the course, accomplishing the projects’ objectives and contributing to the capacity improvement for local healthcare workers.

MCNV Country Director, at the same time, expressed his expectation that Hue UMP will become an OT training center for the central region with well-structured short-term training courses, high quality and effective training methods, contributing to filling the gaps in human resources in the rehabilitation system.

MSc.MD. Ha Chan Nhan, Head of the Rehabilitation Department, Hue UMP speaks at the launching ceremony.

The 9-month course in OT comprises 13 subjects, being delivered in 750 hours (225 ones for theory and 525 ones for practice). It is divided into three semesters, each lasts 10 weeks. There will be a 2-week break between semesters, when the trainees come back to their respective workplaces for self-learning and work on assignments to apply what they have learnt into practice.

Mr. Le Dai Duong, a technician from Rehabilitation Department of Quang Nam Northern Mountainous Region General Hospital, one among the course’s trainees, said that he earlier had the chance to obtain fundamental knowledge of OT through a 7-week course, with a focus on OT interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Mr. Duong hopes that the 9-month course in OT will enrich him with sufficient in-depth knowledge and skills in OT, in order to provide interventions for various diseases that his hospital commonly admits, such as brain injury, complications after accidents, spinal cord injury, etc.

Mr.Dang Xuan Tung expresses thanks on behalf of the trainees.

Another trainee, Ms. Le Thi Quynh Van, Department of General Internal Medicine – Convalesce – Pediatrics, Hospital of Traditional Medicine and Rehabilitation of Kon Tum Province shared: There is high demand for OT services, especially from children with ASD. However, OT services are limited, most of the available rehabilitation services focus on PT. Ms. Quynh Van hopes that the 9-month course will help her hone the knowledge and skills on assessing, making intervention plans, conducting interventions and evaluating post-intervention results, in order to contribute to the development of OT services in the hospital, making OT services more accessible for people in her locality, avoiding long travels for services.

Following the launching ceremony, the course’s first lecture was conducted on May 17th, 2022 at Hue UMP. At the end of the course, the trainees will be granted a certificate of continuing medical training in rehabilitation specializing in OT./.

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