Physiotherapists in Burma improve interventions for families and children through hands on training

This week physiotherapists from Yangon and Hpa-an in Burma, met with international mentor Pam Versfeld to develop their understanding of working effectively with families and to practice hands-on strategies for early paediatric intervention that they will use to improve their own clinical practice.

Thirteen physiotherapists from Burma synchronously met across two locations in Yangon and Hpa-an, for the second in-person training session as part of the ReLAB-HS Clinical Skills Development Training Programme. The purpose of the meeting was to consolidate knowledge following completing the Physiopedia Plus (Plus) online course Family-Centred Developmental Skills Training in Early Intervention. The hands-on case study based practical skills session was lead virtually by Plus instructor and international mentor Pam Versfeld, and facilitated onsite by ReLAB-HS and Physiopedia team members including the education focal point for Burma Hsu Wai Mon Oo and workforce development specialist and Rehabilitation Community manager Martina Lukin.

Participants honed their skills through observing, analysing, and planning effective interventions for families and children, as well as by practicing the hands-on implementation. Of particular value was the opportunity for participant’s to discuss their own paediatric cases with both Pam Versfeld and their peers. 

It was an excellent training for us. We have learnt so many things that we didn’t know before and all learning points are very useful to apply in dealing with our children with disabilities. Thank you very much to our mentor, organisers and facilitators.

Whilst self-directed and peer focused learning are not commonplace in Burma, the skill of the mentor and facilitation of the session supported all participants in collaborating to make the most of the learning experience. They came away with skills specific to their own caseload and were also provided with written resources to help consolidate their learning and support them in applying it to their own clinical practice.

This hybrid approach to learning, through Plus online courses, online discussion groups facilitated through the Rehabilitation Community, and in-person training facilitated by international mentors, offers an innovative approach to delivering clinical skills training in any context.

This work is supported by the USAID funded Learning Acting Building for Rehabilitation in Health Systems (ReLAB-HS) project and is not possible without the generous and committed contribution of the Leahy War Victims fund.

ReLAB-HS is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and is implemented under cooperative agreement number 7200AA20CA00033. The consortium is managed by prime recipient, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.