The effective diagnosis, care, and treatment of infectious diseases require a skilled and motivated health care workforce, and sustainable systems to educate and train those workers. I-TECH uses a systemic approach to build the skills and knowledge of, and foster attitude changes in, health care staff and those who train and educate them.
Health Care Worker Education Systems
I-TECH’s pre-service projects are collaborative undertakings with ministries of health and education. Together with national working groups in each country, I-TECH engages in the reform of educational degree programs and the integration of evidence-based information on infectious diseases into existing courses. I-TECH also leads faculty development training using innovative teaching methods and classroom management strategies.
Further, I-TECH supports task sharing by providing targeted training for nurses, health officers, allied health professionals, and physician assistants so that they may acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to meet the need for fully trained health care workers in places where doctors are in short supply.
With an extensive background in instructional design and the practical application of adult learning theory, I-TECH’s curriculum developers, trainers, translators, and media specialists produce and deliver innovative, high-quality curricula, training programs, and media products for diverse cadres of health care providers and educators. I-TECH’s approach to curriculum development follows the ADDIE Framework.
I-TECH training is grounded in adult learning theory and is based on years of on-the-ground training experience. It makes use of interactive teaching methods to enhance the impact of teaching content. I-TECH has been a leader in the integration of multimedia resources—including drama and documentary storytelling—into training packages. These approaches support learners in gaining knowledge and skills that will lead to changes in practice and, ultimately, to improved patient outcomes.
Framework for Training
The I-TECH Levels of Training Framework is adapted from the U.S. ADIS Education and Training Centers (AETCs) and outlines six levels for ensuring that training programs result in the transfer of learning from the classroom to the jobsite.
Distance Education and eLearning
I-TECH takes advantage of innovative training-delivery platforms and offers distance learning opportunities for health care professionals to gain knowledge and skills without leaving busy job sites. I-TECH has technical expertise in successfully implementing distance learning programs across multiple country sites in settings with limited technology and low bandwidth. For more information on current projects, please visit the Department of Global Health’s E-Learning Library.
I-TECH engages in clinical mentoring as a critical bridge for the training gap that exists between in-service training and practice in the clinical setting. Clinical mentoring enables health care workers to practice new skills in clinical settings with the support and guidance of a more specialized and/or experienced clinician. I-TECH views clinical mentoring as a key component of HIV-related clinical capacity building, and a critical intervention in the decentralization of antiretroviral therapy (ART) programs.
I-TECH clinical mentors work to strengthen the provision of care for people living with HIV and AIDS, tuberculosis (TB), and sexually transmitted infections (STI) by assessing and making recommendations for improvements to service-delivery systems. Clinical mentors also pilot and implement draft tools, algorithms, and guidelines that help providers offer quality care.