Faculty members from the University of Medicine and Pharmacy at Ho Chi Minh City (UMP-HCM) in Vietnam recently spent time training at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso (TTUHSC El Paso).
Earlier this year, TTUHSC El Paso partnered with the visiting institution — and the Pham Ngoc Thach University of Medicine — to establish a collaborative educational program.
As part of the partnership, TTUHSC El Paso will assist with advancing the universities’ medical training and education. Faculty members from both institutions will visit the campus and train for two to three weeks in faculty and curriculum development, standardized patient programs, medical informatics, and clinical simulation. At the end of the intensive training session, the faculty members take a test evaluating their new skills.
“The reason we have them take a test is to ensure that they are totally proficient so that they can be productive as soon as they return to their institution,” said Hoi Ho, M.D., director of the Collaborative Educational Program and consultant for the university’s Center for Advanced Teaching and Assessment in Clinical Simulation (ATACS). “A written test will evaluate their knowledge and application of that knowledge, and of course, nothing can substitute their practice. Under supervision, they will need to demonstrate their proficiency in conducting or operating the medical training equipment.”
The ultimate goal of the partnership is for the Vietnamese universities to establish their own accredited clinical simulation centers, which will be similar to ATACS. ATACS is an integral component of medical education at the Paul L. Foster School of Medicine. The center uses both manikins and “standardized patients” — live people trained to act out clinical scenarios — to facilitate clinical practice. The center’s high fidelity and life-like animatronic manikins are designed to replicate the full spectrum of medical conditions, from childbirth to various medical emergencies and disease-specific signs and symptoms. This unique environment gives health care professionals and students a chance to refine their clinical skills and see the immediate effects of clinical decisions that they may encounter in real-life situations.
“When they return to Vietnam, they will train their colleagues on what they learned and help with the establishment, development, and implementation of new curricula,” Dr. Ho said. “They will then teach medical students and train postgraduate residents and fellows using competency-based medical education.”
The visiting faculty members were Nguyen Duc Khanh, M.D., director of faculty development, Doan Thi Anh Le, R.N., vice dean of nursing faculty, Nguyen Thi My Hanh, M.D., director of the UMP-HCM Clinical Simulation Center, and Doan Thi Thu Hoa, M.D., head of the Department of Assessment.