Review of curricula of laboratory workers to update curricula to current needs and demands from respective countries. Competencies of different levels of laboratory workers formulated and plans of action to improve curricula developed.
Better labs for better health
Well-functioning, sustainable laboratory services, operating according to international principles of quality and safety, are an essential part of strong health systems and are crucial to improving public health. The analyses they provide offer a reliable foundation for evidence-based control of disease outbreaks, robust surveillance of adverse events associated with pharmaceutical or vaccine use and earlier treatment of both acute and chronic diseases. In 2012, WHO Regional Office for Europe (WHO/Europe) and its partner, the WHO Collaborating Centre for Laboratory Strengthening at the KIT Royal Tropical Institute, Amsterdam, designed and launched the project “Better Labs for Better Health” to improve laboratory services and thereby improve health systems and overall public health in Eastern European and Central Asian countries. In each country workshops were conducted as part of the “Better Labs for Better Health” initiative. A training curriculum assessment was performed beforehand. The findings of this curriculum assessment formed the basis for the review of the current training curricula, which in each country was done in a 4-day interactive workshop with representatives of the laboratory education institutes and laboratory managers (end users).
The competencies of different laboratory workers: laboratory assistant, laboratory doctor, and laboratory manager were formulated. These competencies were compared with existing curricula and action plans for improvement made. Teaching methodology, learning assessment, and preconditions for learning were evaluated and action points made.