181370 'South-South' Collaboration for Health: A Case for an Association of African Health Institutions (AAHI)

Monday, October 27, 2008: 3:24 PM

Simeon Mining, PhD , School of Medicine, Moi Univeristy, Eldoret, Kenya
Godwin Aja, MCH, DrPH (c) , Faculty of Medicine, Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo, Nigeria
Sarah Kiguli, MBChB, MMed , Department of Paediatrics, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
Bernard Groosjohan, Dr , Catholic University of Mozambique, CP 821, Biera-Sofala, Mozambique
Julia Dettinger , GHETS, Attleboro, MA
David Egilman, MD, MPH , Department of Family Medicine, Brown University, Attleboro, MA
Africa is the only continent without an association of medical schools or other health institutes. Many African health institutions function under difficult circumstances, but these issues can be addressed via collaboration between near by institutions. Without a regional association many of these connections cannot be made, and problems remain unaddressed. During a meeting with the African medical and biomedical schools at a conference in Ghent, Belgium in September 2006 the African Association of Health Institutions (AAHI) was founded. Since its inception, AAHI has met on several occasions to develop a charter and objectives. Taskforce members developed the objectives aimed at facilitating cross border collaborations between African countries to strengthen health education programs and increase the number of trained health professionals at all levels. In 2008, AAHI will be working to hold a leadership training workshop to improve the leadership skills of the individuals working as professors and mentors at institutions throughout Africa. AAHI will also be working to address the many issues that hamper inter-African cooperation such as: language barriers (English, French, Portuguese and Spanish) and political set ups that make it difficult to initiate partnership and linkages; lack of IT infrastructures that make communication difficult between institutions. AAHI represents a crossing of international and professional boundaries to improve health outcomes throughout Africa.

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe the need for establishing best practice standards for care in low resource, rural and/or high disease burden areas. 2. Analyze methods for disbursing knowledge from experienced providers across language and country lines. 3. Articulate how AAHI facilitates the training of emerging health care providers and the continuing professional development of experienced providers.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Godwin has been involved with AAHI since its inception in 2006 as a member of the Taskforce charged with running the organization. Godwin has presented workshops and presentations on this topic at the Network:TUFH conferences.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.