Strengthening the skills of Tajik clinicians in critical care


As the health professionals primarily responsible for the management of severe cases of influenza infection, front-line clinicians working in intensive care units (ICUs) are likely to be the first to detect severe cases of any novel virus infection with pandemic potential. WHO influenza experts facilitated a training course for these clinicians working across Tajikistan on 8–12 December 2014 in Dushanbe. They learned how to perform critical care management of severe acute respiratory infection, including severe pneumonia, Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, severe sepsis and septic shock, using a systematic, evidence-based approach.

This clinical workshop was delivered through the joint efforts of WHO headquarters, WHO/Europe and the WHO country office in collaboration with  Tajikistan’s Ministry of Health and Social Protection of the Population.

The course used a problem-solving approach to facilitate the learning of the principal components of critical care management of patients with severe forms of influenza infection.  It was based on a participatory approach that offers the participants a step-by-step approach to acquire the knowledge and skills they need for the tasks involved from hospital entry to discharge of patients suffering from severe influenza virus infection. 

Three methods were used to deliver the course: short lectures using slides and small video clips, interactive role play sessions (in small groups of about 10 participants per facilitator), equipment and consumables for demonstration of infection prevention control rules and the use of a toolkit as a reference guide.

To measure participants’ knowledge of the course content, a test was conducted at the start and after completion of the course. Participants also completed a survey at the end of each day to provide immediate feedback regarding learning environment, teaching materials, learning methods, and facilitators. Overall, the participants reported most learning sequences to be very good.