General Electric (GE) and the Kenya Cardiac Society (KCS) have entered into a two-year collaboration to offer echocardiography training to physicians and technicians in public and private hospitals in the country. The training will enable the physicians and technicians to better offer primary baseline assessment for patients with identified cardiac illnesses.
The trainings, which will be held in six-month cohorts, will enrich participants with technical skills on cardiac imaging with focus to anatomy, physiology and hemodynamics as well as sonographic measurement and probe manipulation skills. The training will include several practical sessions led by professional sonographers and physician cardiologists.
Currently, Kenya has approximately 60 cardiac specialists. The course will see 40 personnel trained over the two-year duration of the partnership.
Speaking at the event to announce the collaboration with the Kenya Cardiac Society, Andrew Waititu, CEO, GE Healthcare East Africa said, “The challenge in the efficient delivery of good-quality cardiac care is the absence of skilled and well-trained Healthcare Professionals (HCPs). Our collaboration with the Kenya Cardiac Society to provide echocardiography training is a key step in improving access to quality healthcare across the country.”
According to the Kenya STEPwise Survey for Non-Communicable Diseases, mortality due to cardiovascular diseases in the country ranges from 6.1-8%. Most heart failure cases are caused by undetected, untreated or poorly treated hypertension. Good echocardiographic skills are critical in order to properly identify and diagnose the conditions that cause heart failure.
Dr. Bernard Gitura, President, Kenya Cardiac Society said, “Many facilities have inadequate echocardiography services as well as low access to training for practitioners in the treatment and management of various heart conditions. We are happy to collaborate with GE Healthcare to provide structured training that will enable participants to better diagnose and treat cardiac cases.”
GE Healthcare has a long history in supporting education and training to drive improved health outcomes. In 2016, GE inaugurated a healthcare training and skills institute in Kenya designed to train health professionals. Over 1900 professionals have benefited from the institute since its launch.