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A New Platform for Collaborative Global Radiation Oncology Education

W Ngwa1,2,3,4*, O Irabor2 , W Swanson3 , M Bhagwat4 , (1) Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, (2) Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, (3) University of Massachusetts - Lowell, Lowell, MA, (4) Dana Farber/Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA


(Monday, 7/30/2018) 1:45 PM - 3:45 PM

Room: Karl Dean Ballroom A2

Purpose: One of the major barriers for participation of Medical Physicists in global health is space (geographic)-time barriers. The goal of this project is to develop a platform that circumvents this barrier and allows medical physicists interested in global health to participate remotely in the training of Medical Physicists in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMIC), where there is currently great need.

Methods: An IRB-approved survey was first conducted to assess the need and readiness of oncology health professionals and interests in African LMIC. An online course on global radiation oncology was then implemented for over 6 months for 13 radiation oncology health professionals: medical physicists physicians, and nurses via Moodle with integrated synchronous/live lectures covering Task Group reports, quality assurance, treatment planning, and Incident reporting and learning system. The teaching effectiveness was assessed and additional apps for practical training in treatment planning and quality assurance added based on the NIH-funded Quality Assurance and Review Center platform

Results: 48%, and 60% of the 128 responders felt they needed further training in clinical skill, and cancer management respectively. Weighted averages for technological access, technological skill and competence, capacity for self-directed learning, motivation, and confidence in other prerequisite skills was 69%, 86%, 51% 42% and 80% respectively. 5 Medical Physicists from different USA institutions participated in teaching. 7 of 13 trainees successfully completed the course with high effectiveness rating, receiving Certificates during the November 2017 African Organization for Research and Training in Cancer Conference in Rwanda.

Conclusion: A new platform for collaborative global radiation oncology with integrated remote quality assurance, review and treatment planning applications has been developed and successfully tested. The use of the platform is currently being scaled to allow Medical Physicists who are interested in global health to participate in training radiation oncology health professionals.


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