Higher Institute of Health SciencesServes community and development [Archives:2004/721/Health]

March 18 2004
The new health institute building in Amran governorate
The new health institute building in Amran governorate
Students during training in the laboratory
Students during training in the laboratory
Mr. Abdulwahab Al-Kuhlani, the Dean of the institute
Mr. Abdulwahab Al-Kuhlani, the Dean of the institute
Dr. Abdul Aziz Najm Aldeen, Vice Dean for scientific affairs
Dr. Abdul Aziz Najm Aldeen, Vice Dean for scientific affairs
Mr. Mohamed Al-Ghashem, Vice Dean for Financial and Administrative Affairs
Mr. Mohamed Al-Ghashem, Vice Dean for Financial and Administrative Affairs
Prepared by Ismael Al-Ghabri
Yemen Times Staff

The High Institute of Health Sciences, founded 33 years ago, is considered one of the outstanding professional health establishments in Yemen. In spite of the long time in the field of health and health education, it still needs more development in the fields of vocational and assisting medicine. In addition to emphasizing the importance of training and rehabilitation of the current educational heath cadre there is the need to exert more efforts to cope with developments and modernization taking place the field of rehabilitation of male and female students. So modernization process needs to cover all of the institute's branches throughout the Republic.
Yemen Times has prepared the following report about the Higher Institute of Health Science:
Mr. Abdulwahab Al-Kuhlani, the Dean of the institute, has said that continuous training and rehabilitation efforts and programs of vocational and specialized health cadres, which are taking place at all of the state's services and development apparatuses and public and private mixed sectors, through short and long- term training courses throughout the year, come to be part of implementing instructions and directives of the government and the political leadership to develop and to modernize the working cadres.
Continuous training will give a new push towards the development of human resources, which the government and the leadership consider as the spinal cord towards achieving sustainable development and expansion of various aspects of development. Furthermore, it is important for the success of economic, financial, and administrative reforms in the health sector to have several workshops and training and rehabilitation courses of cadres working in health establishments in Yemen.
Dr. Abdul Aziz Najm Aldeen, in reply to a question about the extent of interest in training and rehabilitating teachers and cadres of health institutes in the governorates and the nature of their plans in that, explained they have a big plan of three approaches, the major rehabilitation in teaching methods, increase their skills and abilities through further studies, each in the field of specialty, and through continued education. This includes short training courses, getting informed on whatever is new through using the internet. All of these in the stream of training and rehabilitation of teachers.

The Higher Institute of Health's budget does not permit and is not sufficient to implement the above goals, said Mr. Mohamed Al-Ghashem, Vice Dean for Financial and Administrative Affairs. The expansion in governorates and the opening of new branches of HIHS taking place at the expense of the budget of the HIH. We have sought recently support of the public where each branch, in coordination with the governor and the local council of the governorate to bear a small portion of the students' fees to improve the level of the institute gradually.
Mr. Najy Al-Samawe, Vice Dean for Branches' Affairs, said the Institute had sixteen branches in various governorates. Furthermore, the Sana'a branch alone has ten department, three nursing schools in Sana'a and one Suddha province, while Aden's Ameen Nasher Institute has seven branches.

The Institute and its branches have for 33 years provided the health sectors with graduates in the various health and medical specialties. The start of the Higher Institute of Health Sciences began from scratch but now 80% of the staff is Yemeni trained at the hands of Yemeni cadre.
It has been able to achieve noticeable scientific development in spite of its limited capabilities and resources. It has become one of the successful health institutes in the Middle East Region, according to evaluation of experts of different organizations.

The foundation and development of the Institute of Health Sciences:
The Higher Institute of Health began in the form of nursing schools: a one-year nursing training course or a three- year diploma after primary education. In the mid of 1990s, HIHS began improving some of its branches in Taiz, Hodeidah and Ibb by admitting and enrolling only students graduated from High Schools, establishing various specialized departments and enhancing the practical and scientific capabilities. It continues to follow up and evaluate the scientific developments and curricula regularly in order to achieve its targeted goals.

The obstacles facing the HIHS and its branches:
1- The lack of a health policy (a plan to acquire human resources in the different Governorates).
2- The low budget appropriated for HIHS and its branches.
3- The high demand on HIHS and its branches due to intensity of high school graduates.
4- The scarcity of training centers against the high increase of demand for trainees by public and private health educational corporations.
5- Health clinics and hospitals do not bear the responsibility of training centers.
6- The hiatus between health policy and the role of health institutes, since the health institutes are considered to play only a secondary role in spite of being the resource of health development in general.
7- The lack of capabilities to rehabilitate teachers in different higher specialties abroad.
8- The absence of an opportunity for HIHS to raise educational levels of its former graduates, especially to obtain supplementary bachelor's degrees. This leads to limiting educational efforts to general diplomas.
9- The absence of employment scale for the teaching board at HIHS in order to obtain their rights financially and functionally. The board is neither affiliated with teacher's law or with University law.

A plan to revise and amend curricula:
With regards to whether the curricula are unified or not, the Dean replied with 'Yes', the curricula at HIHS and its branches are unified in principles and established standards. But what could apply in Sana'a or Hodeidah could not be applied in Ibb, for example. Each governorate has its health problems. However, we lay the main guidelines and leave administrations and teaching boards the freedom to handle the curriculum according to need and demand of each governorate.
HIHS has now a plan with World Health Organization to review the curricula, which would take nearly two years. The Social Fund for Development will finance the assistant doctor medical curriculum, Said Dr. Abdul Aziz Najm Aldeen.

Last word
In spite of negative aspects of the training and rehabilitating process in the health field, there are positive aspects. You can imagine that the local health cadre almost did not exist prior to the foundation of the institute in 1997. The required health services at the few hospitals existed then, were met by primarily foreign cadres, coming into the country in the form of medical missions, with the exception of limited number of local personnel who were trained during the time of the missions, either in the hospitals or were dispatched abroad. The deteriorating health situations, in cities and rural areas, have motivated HIHS, since its foundation until now, to seriously seek the qualification of health and medical cadres and to develop their practical and scientific expertise through inauguration of a number of departments in various health and medical specialties. Those have contributed to development of the health aspect in cities and rural regions.