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New Open-Access Education Series on Sickle Cell Disease

New Open-Access Education Series on Sickle Cell Disease
As part of the SickKids-Ghana Paediatric Nursing Education Partnership

Sickle cell disease is one of the most common genetic diseases affecting millions of people worldwide. Healthcare professionals play an important role in providing support and care for patients and families with sickle cell disease, yet there is a gap in the availability of open-access education for healthcare professionals. To address this gap, the Centre for Global Child Health at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and the Ghana College of Nurses and Midwives (GCMN), as part of the SickKids-Ghana Paediatric Nursing Education Partnership, developed a suite of online courses hosted by the WCEA. Three courses are currently available under the initiative. This includes:

  1. Sickle Cell Disease in Ghana: Genetics and Diagnostics
  2. Sickle Cell Disease: Pathophysiology and Clinical Manifestations in Children and Adolescents
  3. Sickle Cell Disease: Promoting Health for Children and Adolescents

The courses feature interactive content that provides healthcare professionals with a foundational understanding of sickle cell disease (SCD) so they can address misconceptions and improve the quality of life and health outcomes for patients with SCD including in the context of COVID-19.

The courses, adapted from accredited in-person training, were developed for healthcare workers (nurses, community health nurses, midwives, and physicians) in Ghana, but have broad relevance for healthcare workers in the region and globally. Since the courses were launched at the end of 2022, there has been significant uptake, particularly in the Afro region where the burden of SCD is greatest.

The SickKids-Ghana Paediatric Nursing Education Partnership, which receives support from the Government of Canada through Global Affairs Canada, has also developed an education series on COVID-19 which addresses COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy. To date, these courses have been completed by over 30,000 healthcare professionals globally through the WCEA portal.

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