Development of National Prosthetic and Orthotic Education in Ukraine
Our educational model is helping Ukraine establish a P&O program at NURE university in Kharkiv!
As of February this year, 10 selected practitioners in P&O service delivery with some years of experience, but without structured and accredited education, are students in the blended learning program that will enable them to qualify as ISPO Category II professionals. On the international level and according to the standards for education in P&O, this means that they will be allowed to work with patients in clinical settings. For Ukraine, this signifies a creation of a group of national professionals who will through the project qualify to become trainers of others.
Why is this important?
Using the estimates of WHO, the calculated number of people with disabilities in Ukraine is at least 450.000. These individuals are in need of regular prosthetic and orthotic services. At least 4500 trained P&O clinicians are required to address these needs adequately. With current numbers as small as 137 of trained practitioners, who received their education between 2002 and 2012 from NURE University in Karkhiv, many individuals in need of P&O assistive devices are left underrated or even untreated. The Ukrainian Research State Institute for Prosthesis Design, Prosthetic Building and Work Ability Rehabilitation, and NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) have joined forces with Human Study in this project to reestablish the program at NURE as an internationally recognized education that would provide Ukraine with the needed professionals. Our goal is a development of a national Bachelor of Science in Prosthetics and Orthotics program at NURE University that meets the international standards for education in P&O (ISPO standards).
The longterm goal of this project is a continuum of training that will be secured through the establishment of the P&O program at NURE. The first phase of the project is to train this group of 10 practitioners to the Category II level by the end of 2019. After their graduation, a new group of practitioners will be enrolled into the program and the graduates of the first group will serve as assistant teachers – beginning of their education as trainers in P&O. At the same time, the project will aim at securing the funds to continue their education to the highest professional level (ISPO Category I), which is the internationally recognized P&O trainer level. These professionals will be the seed of independence for the national P&O program at NURE, who will be able in future to independently produce the urgently needed P&O professional cadre for Ukraine.