Developing a Framework to Evaluate Training Programs Provided by WHO: The Feasibility of Incorporating Social Justice, Cultural Competency, Social Justice and Investment
Fraser, Joy H.
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The paper describes a study that examined training programs at WHO. The feasibility of incorporating indicators of return on investment, social justice and cultural competency was explored. Every year increasing amounts of financial and human resources are invested globally to support the provision of training for health care providers. While there is much anecdotal and some formal documentation about the positive results of such endeavors, there is little real evidence that investing these resources contributes to building the capacity of individuals and countries to achieve improved health outcomes. It is important to demonstrate that the time and money spent on training programs is an effective and efficient use of resources and that these efforts result in scaling up of the numbers of health care workers who have positive impacts on global health. However, according to observations from personnel at the World Health Organization (WHO), and from a review of the WHO website and documents, there is no comprehensive framework to evaluate the impact of training programs for health professionals. In addition to the need to demonstrate accountability, there is a need identified by those providing training programs, for efficient and reliable monitoring and evaluation systems. Therefore, in collaboration with the office of Nursing and Midwifery at WHO, we engaged in participatory action research related to impact evaluation of training programs. The purpose of the research was gather information with which to develop a framework for impact evaluation that could be used to improve upon the design and delivery of training programs for health workers. The intention is to examine the types of evaluation methods currently being used, explore the degree to which users are satisfied with these methods, and to gather ideas about what ought to be included in a comprehensive evaluation framework. In addition to return on investment (ROI), the feasibility of incorporating indicators of social justice and cultural competency was explored. Participants identified the need for a practical framework with specific indicators that measure a variety of qualitative and quantitative aspects of educational outcomes.