Exploring Global Health Opportunities (EGHO)
The Global Health Collaborative (GHC) believes that international health partnerships are a route to tackling inequalities within and between countries. As such, we strive to build lasting health partnerships that are able to further education, training and research within the host organisations and the University of Plymouth.
The Global Health Collaborative has involvement with a variety of different partnerships, and strongly advocates for THETs 9 principles of partnership to be central to these. Through the GHC, the University now has 14 years of experience with Tropical Health Education Trust partnerships (Kenya, Ethiopia, Rwanda and Uganda), recognising the extensive mutual benefits to students, health workers, institutions and health systems that such partnerships can bring.
Current projects of the GHC include the following:

Kenya

‘’ (Reg: 1182182) is a UK-based charity which was first developed in 2011 by Dr Lucy Obolensky and Dr Kerri Jones.
It strives for sustainable improvement in the health and wellbeing of people in low-middle-income countries (LMICs). Its principle is to work where invited in LMICs, thereby ensuring local engagement and increasing the chances of success. Through sharing skills, the hope is to transform lives, relieve suffering and reduce poverty. It currently offers the following projects, led by volunteer NHS staff, mostly from the SW Peninsula:
1. projects which are orthopaedic trauma camps/teaching projects delivered side by side by UK and Kenyan volunteers, working together to improve trauma care. Each project runs for 1–2 weeks.
2. programme (Global Recognition and Assessment of the Sick Patient and Initial Treatment). GRASPIT is a one-day course designed to give clinicians a structured systematic approach to the management of acutely ill deteriorating patients. It was established in Kenya with the support of the National Resuscitation Council of Kenya. .
3. ‘’ is a 10-day Quality Improvement (QI) and Leadership skills programme designed to empower front-line health workers to improve their own systems of care. Teams work together to tackle problems identified by them locally and they set up their own QI projects during the course. An abbreviated version of the materials used can be found at UPBEAT. This programme is supported by the Society for Quality Healthcare in Kenya (SQHK).
4. teaching and training.
It has also delivered projects in emergency medicine, first aid, primary care and in communities, working with children to enhance their life chances.
The charity has worked in many areas of Kenya including Nanyuki, Nyahururu, Mombasa, Marsabit, Isiolo, Kitale, Kisumu, Nyeri, Kajiado, Karatina and Nairobi.
Ongoing partnerships are in Nanyuki/Nyahururu and with St Joseph’s Mission Hospital & Trauma Centre in Kisumu County (2023).

TeamTalk

Future Health Africa also developed ‘TeamTalk’, a project focussed on improving health at a community level.

The GHC also links in with the Health Education England sponsored .

Kenya-UK Health Alliance (KUKHA)

Alongside Future Health Africa, in 2022, the GHC was asked to assist in the development of a new government backed, Kenya-UK Health Alliance (KUKHA). As part of the Alliance, the GHC won a Health Education England (HEE) grant to project manage and lead a Critical Care and Emergency Medicine training programme in Southwest Kenya. The project also hopes to utilise expertise within university, in the creation of a new simulation centre in the same region and by looking at potential for creating novel revenue streams for all stakeholders.

Rwanda

In 2021 Peninsula Medical School, Peninsula Dental School and the GH collaborative were asked by the Head of Human Resources for Health Secretariat, Rwanda to support delivery of their new 2021 ‘Human Resources for Health’ strategy.
The GHC won a THET COVID grant to develop a digital partnership between Kigali and Peninsula Medical School. Three lines of collaborative work were established from this.
1. Undergraduate evidence based learning (EBL) shared virtual sessions
The grant also enabled a room in Kigali dental/medical school to be equipped with technology to enable excellent small group digital teaching. In this way this project should be sustainable for the future.
2. Virtual Medical Electives
Virtual Medical Electives were developed and piloted between Plymouth and Kigali medical students who virtually hosted each other. Electives have for some time been thought to be outdated, unethical and not well structured educationally.
3. Postgraduate orthopaedics
The two departments held multiple virtual group meetings to discuss how they could work together through grand rounds, complex case discussions and journal clubs. Registrars/trainees were paired together to discuss their needs and training requirements and project money was allocated to joint research projects e.g. developing and trialling alternative VAC dressings through adapting aquarium pumps for open fractures (currently unaffordable at £400 / patient). The project has been looking at developing these dressings and trialing them in a research trial).
A GHC virtual conference, held on 5 November 2021, had a session that presented and evaluated this project. .

Sierra Leone

Masanga Hospital

A long-running association with Masanga Hospital in Sierra Leone means opportunities for medical students, global and remote healthcare postgraduate students and research.
Led by Dr Aatish Patel, , Peninsula Medical School and University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust have been in partnership with Masanga Hospital in rural Sierra Leone since 2008.
During that time we have collectively raised £600,000 and helped to facilitate the rehabilitation of the hospital following the civil war. In the last seven years, over 60 Peninsula Medical School staff and students have been placed at Masanga as part of a mutual benefit programme.
Our volunteers have gained experience in health issues of global importance, such as the Ebola crisis, and in return we have been able to provide skilled workers and funding for a number of educational projects.
Since 2014 we have received two Department for International Development grants to provide training in a number of areas, including infection prevention control and Ebola community awareness. To date we have trained over 500 community members and health care workers, using innovative educational tools and technology to improve resilience against further outbreaks of viral haemorrhagic fever.

Ethiopia

In 2012/13 THET was approached by the Minister of Health in Ethiopia and asked for assistance from medical schools and universities in developing twelve new medical schools across Ethiopia.
in Western Ethiopia and assisted with problem based learning approaches, public health of the New Innovative Medical Curriculum and developing staff research skills in a new university.
Reciprocal student and staff visits are ongoing.

Thames Valley and Wessex ‘Improving Global Health’ fellow scheme.

For the last 4 years The SW GHC has had links with the scheme, with places on the MSc Global Health module being funded by this scheme The IGH Programme recruits NHS employees from across England, from clinical or non-clinical backgrounds, with an interest in developing their leadership skills in a challenging resource-poor environment. Some of these fellows have gone on to work on and develop these partnerships.

Moving forward

The GHC is currently involved in the development of a transnational partnership between the University of Plymouth and the , at the University of Peradeniya in Sri Lanka.
Similar links have also been made with in Nepal, where a programme of training and educational exchanges with the University of Plymouth is to commence in 2023.