The K4Health/Nigeria Continuing Medical Laboratory Education (CMLE) Project began in September 2011 and concluded in September 2015. Funded by the USAID Mission in Nigeria, this four-year project aimed to improve medical laboratory scientists’ (MLS) knowledge and skills with the ultimate goal of improving job performance and medical laboratory service delivery.
Working in close partnership with the Medical Laboratory Science Council in Nigeria (MLSCN) and the Association for Medical Laboratory Scientist of Nigeria (AMLSN), the project developed, disseminated, and institutionalized an updated CPD Policy, making earning CPD credits a requirement for annual re-licensing. As part of the new Policy, the project launched nine AMLSN-authored, MLSCN-accredited eLearning courses on AMLSN's own eLearning platform, of which the project supported the development.
The end of project evaluation conducted in 2014 revealed that the CPD Policy is meeting its intended goal of improving the technical skills and proficiencies of medical laboratory scientists. Supervisors of medical laboratory scientists confirmed that the CPD activities, including the accredited eLearning courses, have lead to job improvements in laboratory management, client interaction, and technical skills related to diagnostic procedures.
Building Sustainability Through Capacity-Strengthening Activities
To ensure sustainability beyond the project-funded period, K4Health transferred responsibility and coordination of all project activities to AMLSN and MLSCN by documenting roles and responsibilities, conducting short-term field visits, co-developing work plans, collaborating on strategic planning, and facilitating training workshops on eLearning as well as financial management capacity building, policy development, proposal writing, resource mobilization, business planning, and monitoring and evaluation.
A hallmark of the project is the organizational systems that were put in place and the project's ability to leverage a number of open-source technologies to aid in this effort. This included customizing MLSCN's iHRIS system to include a module for tracking the CPD Policy, making it interoperable with AMLSN's eLearning platform and MLSCN's payment software, and making the system available for self-service.
These technologies along with the organizational structures, staff, and processes are still in place and use today!
Hear from the partners how a common vision was established and put into practice to make this project a success.