Building Capacity of Health Professionals in Low- and Middle-Income Countries Through Online Continuing Professional Development in Nutrition

Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions (02/05/21) Stark, Christina M.; Garner, Christine D.; Garg, Aashima; et al.

United Nations Children's Fund researchers evaluated a free online course developed to train health professionals worldwide in infant and young child feeding (IYCF) to gauge course satisfaction, learning, and application via surveys administered after course completion and nine months later. Respective response rates during those periods were 99% and 55%. Nearly all of the respondents to the postcourse survey (99%) said they learned "a lot" or "some" from all topics, and more than 70% applied "a lot" of or "some" information nine months later. Respondents to open-ended questions cited improved knowledge, skills, and competence to conduct their work, and also desired more similar training courses. Many of those who only partially completed the course said they did not have sufficient time (74%), but most (94%) wanted to continue it. The positive response hints at an unmet need for continuing professional development for health professionals in low- and middle-income countries. The assessment determined that online training is feasible, acceptable, and boosted professionals' knowledge and usage of IYCF concepts in nutrition programming.

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