Keeping up to date and applying the latest reported evidence; assessing and tackling the impact of lockdown on physical health status and on emotional and mental health. All while adapting practices and policies to ensure health institutes are safe and COVID-secure. Re-adjusting healthcare delivery is a challenge for everyone, and it is imperative that patients aren’t the only ones who are supported through it.
“More agile CPD is key to ensuring COVID’s legacy doesn’t become an injustice for the health sector” commented Dr Zachariah Nazar, Qatar University-Health CPD coordinator.
Healthcare professionals carry high levels of responsibility in ensuring patients are discharged from hospitals, clinics and health centers with the best possible outcomes, and they are doing it in a time of change and uncertainty, even with regard to how these outcomes will be determined. How to meet this volatility is a key concern, as it is likely to affect staff’s own wellbeing and effectiveness.
That’s why QU-Health has maintained their focus on delivering regular and targeted continued professional development (CPD). Because not only does it drive up standards and performance, but it is a cornerstone for managing organizational change. A commitment to lifelong learning for all sends a strong signal to staff that the health system’s investment in them is equally prized as their patients’ health outcomes.
It has been well reported that health workers have worked relentlessly on the frontline throughout this pandemic. They have had to adapt quickly and often with inadequate information to support new models for delivering care, for remote consultations, for implementing new treatment guidelines and establishing systems to maintain essential resources. It is nothing short of heroic, but to say they have done so tirelessly is as dangerous as downplaying their role.
Right now, many health workers could benefit greatly from a change in perspective, which additional training can provide. The opportunity to invest in their own learning and to step away from the healthcare environment – be it for an hour’s webinar or a day’s training – has the potential to reenergize.
Dr Zachariah Nazar explained that, “the idea of taking time out of the hectic day, with its innumerous demands, may be unthinkable for some. It’s therefore essential that professional development adapts too and that is why QU-Health have purposefully designed CPD sessions into 1-2 hour interactive Webinars that are extremely inclusive and freely accessible and allow professionals from different organizations to come together to share knowledge and experiences; supported by subject experts.”
Over the past months QU-Health has partnered with HMC and experts from institutes across Qatar to discuss the most pressing learning and training needs of healthcare professionals. Subsequently, QU-Health has developed a schedule of regular open-access CPD Webinars designed to address these learning needs and encourage a community of learning and knowledge-sharing amongst healthcare professionals in Qatar.
The most recent events have included continuation of a 6-part research skills series and sessions targeted at managing stressors and encouraging mindfulness as coping strategies during the COVID-19 pandemic. All sessions are delivered by a panel of leading subject experts and are streamed live on YouTube, accessible to an international audience. These efforts compliment QU-Health’s commitment to supporting the optimization of healthcare provision in Qatar and beyond.