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TEACH-VIP: WHO’s contribution to capacity building for injury prevention
  1. L A Sminkey
  1. Technical Officer, Department of Injuries and Violence Prevention, World Health Organization

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    Building capacity is one of the main challenges facing the injury prevention area today. In many countries injuries and their prevention have been largely neglected. As a result, there are many settings around the world where public health training does not address injury related issues; medical training includes treatment of trauma but overlooks prevention; and government staff in sectors relevant to injury have neither received injury related training nor worked within structures that allow for coordinated sharing of information relevant to injury prevention.

    Although the capacity building needs are varied, a clear priority is training. Accordingly, and in response to a variety of requests from governments and professional groups, the World Health Organization (WHO) has coordinated the development of TEACH-VIP, a comprehensive injury prevention and control curriculum that has been developed over three years through the efforts of WHO and a network of over 60 global injury prevention experts across 19 countries. The course material is designed around a classroom instruction model, with PowerPoint slide presentations, supporting lecture notes, and learning exercises that address a full range of topics relevant to injury prevention and control.

    Among the key advantages of TEACH-VIP are the facts that the curriculum is modular and that it is distributed on CD-ROM. The modularity means diverse settings may select those lessons (from among the 60 available) that make most sense for the training audience. The dissemination as electronic files means the material may readily be adapted, with integration of local data and training examples to facilitate successful training that is relevant to participants’ needs. The training materials on the CD-ROM are accompanied by a users’ manual designed to provide trainers with the information necessary to make their training sessions more effective.


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    The lessons within TEACH-VIP cover a wide range of topics, including: application of key injury prevention and control principles; design of effective surveillance systems; collection and assessment of injury data; development of preventive programmes and policies; and evaluation of intervention measures. TEACH-VIP was successfully pilot tested in more than 20 settings worldwide between September 2004 and June 2005. Training audiences were varied and included government staff, medical and public health students, and injury prevention and response providers. The training materials include five questionnaires for evaluation purposes. Two important results of the evaluation are that a strong consensus exists that the materials are both of good quality and meet an important need in the various settings.

    Training is only one element of capacity building. WHO will continue to strengthen the TEACH-VIP training material and its implementation, while also contributing to address other capacity building needs that fall within WHO’s mandate.

    TEACH-VIP was made available for general distribution in September 2005. Settings that wish to receive the training packages, which include the users’ manual and the TEACH-VIP CD-ROM, may register to receive these on the capacity building section of WHO’s injury prevention website at www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/.

    For additional information about TEACH-VIP, contact Dr David Meddings on meddingsd{at}who.int.

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