Distance-Based Education for Nurses Caring for Children With Cancer in Sub-Saharan Africa

Journal of Pediatric Oncology Nursing (07/13/20) Hockenberry, Marilyn; Mulemba, Tadala; Nedege, Aisha; et al.

A recent study assessed a distance-based training program for nurses working in sub-Saharan Africa. The Global Hematology-Oncology Pediatric Excellence (HOPE) program, part of Texas Children's Hospital in Houston, incorporated a Moodle (modular object-oriented dynamic learning environment) distance-based learning platform and computer notebooks containing course content. HOPE teaches fundamental principles of nursing care for children with cancer, and was deployed in Malawi, Uganda and Botswana. Regular education sessions on Zoom and WhatsApp reinforced independent learning. Formal course evaluation included written pre- and post-tests, self-competency assessments and simulated checkoffs on essential pediatric oncology nursing competencies. The authors concluded that HOPE's success highlights the value of formal training for nurses in low- and middle-income countries to become full-time pediatric oncology nursing specialists.

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