Resource Spotlight: An Analysis of Pre-Service Family Planning Teaching in Clinical and Nursing Education in Tanzania

Photo by DFID
Photo by DFID

Promoting family planning is an important tool for economic and health development of a country. Health workers play a vital role in promoting family planning. But how much do they know and understand about family planning issues, such as promoting different types of contraceptive devices. That’s what a group of researchers asked in Tanzania, assessing the level of family planning in the curricula of pre-service training for nurses, clinical officers and non-physician clinicians.

The researchers found that 93 percent of the Tanzania’s health schools studied included family planning in the curriculum. However, only 23 percent of the schools earned a rating of high-level competence in this area. in participant interviews, more than a few instructors felt the curriculum to be lacking. Some complained of lack of regular exams in the subject matter. Others also worried about a lack of faculty to teach family planning issues.

“Overall, the inclusion of FP in the assessed curricula was not as prominent as one would expect, given the importance of FP as a common health intervention and its relevance to the country’s development policies,” the researchers found.

Another issue was the curriculum was based largely on theory as few institutions did not have facilities to initiate family planning training. This forces students to learn via role playing and short acting. As the researchers point out, fewer than 10 percent of schools surveyed taught surgical methods of family planning.

Please read the resource on analyzing pre-service family planning teaching in health schools in Tanzania.

For more information, you may also check the Family Planning and Pre-Service Education subject areas.

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