Washington: Children’s HeartLink, a non-profit organization partnering with health care centres in underserved regions of the world to promote sustainable cardiac care for children with heart disease, in association with India’s National Board of Examinations (NBE), the group that sets standards for post graduate medical education and examinations and People4People, a non-profit charitable trust in India, has announced the mandating of online education modules to supplement education at all paediatric cardiology training programmes in India.
According to Children’s HeartLink, the project will focus on enrolling all paediatric cardiology programmes that are accredited for fellowship training and in the next year, a select number of pilot programmes that are accredited for paediatrics training.
The objective of the project is to bring paediatric cardiology teaching standards up to the same level across all teaching centres in the country, so that the knowledge base for paediatric cardiologists and paediatricians is expanded and, ultimately, the screening, referral and treatment system for children with heart disease is improved. This type of partnership is a first for the NBE and for Children’s HeartLink.
“Many practitioners in India have identified significant discrepancies in the learning experience for paediatric cardiology and paediatrics fellows across academic institutions, particularly in terms of receiving structured and standardized education of theory and critical thinking. Supplementing their practical education with online instruction could make a significant difference in standardizing paediatric cardiology education in India,” said Bistra Zheleva, director of international programmes at Children’s HeartLink.
A basic framework and IT platform for this project have already been developed by Cisco and Linkstreet and successfully piloted by People4People founder, Dr Sunita Maheshwari, a paediatric cardiologist in Bangalore. Children’s HeartLink joined the NBE and Dr Maheshwari in 2011 to make the programme more comprehensive and more widely accessible to fellows across the country.
“The NBE fully supports and endorses this project for all paediatric cardiology and paediatric fellows in India. There is much to be gained for our cardiac care system and more importantly, for the children of India,” said Dr Bipin Batra, director of the NBE.