Training Needs Assessment of Health Care Professionals in Reproductive, Maternal and Newborn Health in a Low-Income Setting in Tanzania

Columba Mbekenga, Eunice Pallangyo, Tumbwene Mwansisya, Kahabi Isangula, Loveluck Mwasha, James Orwa, Micheal Mugerwa, Michaela Mantel, Leonard Subi, Secilia Mrema, David Siso, Edna Selestine, Marleen Temmerman, Grace Edwards

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Background: Healthcare delivery globally and particularly in low-income setting is challenged by multiple, complex and dynamic problems. The reproductive, maternal and newborn health (RMNH) care is among the most affected areas resulting into high maternal and neonatal mortality and morbidity across the Sub Saharan region and Tanzania in particular. However, under-investment in adequate education and training of health care providers (HCPs) is reported worldwide and contributes to the critical shortages, and lack of adequate knowledge and skills among HCPs. The aim of this study was to assess the training needs among HCPs of RMNH care in selected health facilities of Mwanza, Tanzania.

Methods: A cross-sectional descriptive and analytic survey using a self- administered questionnaire was conducted in 36 out of 80 health care facilities included in the Government of Canada and Aga Khan Foundation Canada funded Improving Access to Reproductive, Maternal and Newborn Health in Mwanza, Tanzania (IMPACT) project within the 8 Councils of Mwanza region in Tanzania. The training needs assessment (TNA) tool adapted from the Hennessy-Hicks’ Training Needs Assessment Questionnaire (TNAQ) instrument was used for data collection. The HCPs provided ratings on the importance of their task and their current performance of the task. The differences in scores were calculated to identify the greatest training needs.

Results: Out of 153 HCPs who responded to the TNA questionnaire, majority were registered (n=62) and enrolled (n=43) nurses. Ninety percent (n= 137) were from government-owned health facilities, mostly from hospitals 68 (45%). Training needs were high in 16 areas (out of 49) including cervical cancer screening and care; accessing research resources; basic and comprehensive emergency obstetric and newborn care; and sexual and gender-based violence. The overall perceived importance of the training needs was significantly associated with perceived performance of tasks related to RMNH services (Pearson Correlation (r) = .256; p

Conclusions: The study highlights 16 (out of 49) training gaps as perceived by HCPs working in RMNH in Tanzania. The utilization of findings from the TNA has great potential to facilitate designing of effective trainings for local RMNH services delivery hence improve the overall quality of care.

Original languageUndefined/Unknown
JournalSchool of Nursing & Midwifery, East Africa
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020

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