, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 15 – Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD), a leading global medical technology company and the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has launched the first specimen collection training curriculum in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The curriculum was launched through the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at the Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC) as a department of Medical Laboratory Sciences.
Healthcare professionals, including laboratory technologists, nurses and clinical officers will be trained in a Phlebotomy course that teaches safe collection of blood and other specimens required for diagnosis and monitoring of diseases.
The specimen collection training program is an expansion of the Kenyan Safer Blood Collection Initiative, a partnership between PEPFAR and BD to improve blood collection practices in Kenya.
“Our collaboration with PEPFAR in Kenya has demonstrated that proper specimen collection practices help protect healthcare workers and ensure accurate diagnoses,” said BD Executive Vice President Gary Cohen.
“The establishment of a formal training program with the Kenyan Medical Training College will ensure this training will continue on a consistent and sustainable basis,” he said.
BD and KMTC are working together to build sustainable capacity for diagnosis, management and monitoring of HIV and other diseases in Kenya.
BD will provide KMTC with modern training technologies, hands-on skills stations and also support curriculum development, along with content and capacity building at the facility.
In addition, BD will provide training in occupational safety and key clinical and laboratory procedures, which are vital components of healthcare capacity building and sustainability.
These trainings will help improve the safety of healthcare workers and patients, while helping to reduce needle stick injuries and the transmission of HIV, hepatitis and other blood borne pathogens.
“In this era of HIV/AIDS, the opening of this Center of Excellence is a milestone towards the improvement of health worker safety and reduction of pre-analytical errors to ensure reliability of laboratory results,” said KMTC Director Charles Onudi.