On this morning, the halls of the Central Private School of Paramedicine and Health Sciences in Tunis are bustling with students. Founded in 2001, Central University is the largest private multidisciplinary university in the country (health, business, law, engineering, architecture and design, journalism and communications, information and communication technology). It also houses an executive training center and has more than 5,000 students from nearly twenty countries. The institution also houses the impressive Honoris Medical Simulation Center (MSC) which is equipped with the latest in health technology.
In total, the health school offers about ten paramedic courses (medical imaging – radiotherapy, speech therapy, breastfeeding, anesthesia, intensive care, physiotherapy, optometry, obstetrics, prosthetics, nutrition and instrumentation) and two master’s courses, the first in physics and the second in Chinese Medicine Adaptive Nursing, in partnership with Zhejiang Chinese Medical University in Hangzhou. On that day, a Chinese delegation had just made the trip to discuss a double graduation project, at the headquarters of the Tunisian institution of Honoris United Universities Group.
The network of African private universities, Honoris United Universities, set up in 2017 by UK investment fund Actis which invested $275m in the project, now has 71,000 students on 70 campuses in ten countries. Its network covers about fifteen institutions and its students benefit from partnerships and exchange programs with more than 190 European, American and Asian universities. To date, honorary institutions offer more than 420 programs in all disciplines.
State-of-the-art laboratory for hyper-realistic training
“Welcome to Jataka”, the medical space of the Central School of Health in Tunis, features animated models from a sci-fi movie that simulate patients’ reactions. ” This helps the students to practice in improved conditions. This practice is in keeping with our adage: “It’s never the first time on a patient!” explains Mamoun Ben Cheikh, MD (Anesthesia and Intensive Care) and Facilitator at the Honoris Medical Simulation Center (MSC) in Tunis. To date, there are only two International Society for Simulation in Healthcare accredited Medical Simulation Centers on the continent (in Cape Town, South Africa and in Tunisia).
There is a modern control room attached to the operating room while scenarios are presented to the students practicing on bedridden statues, surrounded by first aid equipment (defibrillator, infusion, etc.). Incredibly realistic, high-fidelity patient simulators are controllable. They are able to breathe, speak, or respond to stimuli. The parts are interchangeable. At the end of the practical exams, student assessments are conducted in modern, sterile debriefing rooms, under hospital blue light. “ We really stress pedagogy in Tunisia. Besides, the teachers are also evaluated by the students. “, Determines.
Crossing the corridors, the doctor stops in front of the new operating room and bows over the Resusci Anne (named after a Seine stranger who serves as a model for the female mannequins in the operating rooms). Her belly slowly rises and the model lets out a low moan.
” MSC welcomes fans from all over Africa: from Benin, but also from Algeria, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger (…]We want to train skills that can also be used in sub-Saharan Africa Says Wafaa Trudy, Director of the Central School of Health.
Lecturio connects students with experts in global medicine
After the Master of Science, Honoris Group students now benefit from a new learning platform. “ The Covid-19 pandemic has made it possible to accelerate online learning, with innovative and more proactive approaches to the student ”explains Ilham Mestiri, Director General of UPSAT (Faculty of Sciences and Health of Sousse, Tunisia and Sfax), who is also a member of the honorary network. Since 2008, German EdTech Lecturio has been developing an educational platform for health professions, designed by prestigious partners from Johns Hopkins University, Harvard University or University College London, in particular.
Powered by artificial intelligence (AI), Lecturio offers several courses and nearly 10,000 videos as well as a bank of clinical case studies. Currently, more than half a million learners and educators are using the platform in 175 countries. Since last September, it has been available to 2,000 students and 71 teachers from the Central School of Health and UPSAT schools.
” The advantage of this platform is adaptive learning, based on artificial intelligence and algorithms that identify the strengths and weaknesses of each student, in order to select a customized program with appropriate tests (quizzes and targeted revisions, editor’s note). We found that skill acquisition was more efficient and faster thanks to Lecturio Ilham Masteri says:
New Tunisia Provider The world of medical skills?
The Central School of Health of Tunis also provides compulsory training in English, French and German. ” Languages are very important in a resume. Learning German leads to employment in Germany explains the principal of the central school. Three years of study and a B2 level German language certificate, together with additional training, allow students to obtain a diploma recognized in Germany as they enroll in public or private health facilities.
” Germany’s employment needs make GIZ a training for the entire promotions. They are looking for 300,000 nurses by 2025. However, Germany is not the only destination our recruitment service is working on. Wafaa Trudy explains. ” Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), but also Canada and the United Kingdom All are popular destinations for Tunisian students, she says. “ Education in Tunisia is of great value, it is recognized beyond borders Yakther Abdel-Razzak Al-Zawari, Advisor to the Central University Group Management.
This international appeal for Tunisian healthcare workers is not without impact at the national level, as expressed by the Tunisian General Labor Union, which warned in 2018 that the exiles of doctors numbered in the hundreds every year.
UPSAT, the new talent catalyst
Waheed in front of his mentor, 23-year-old Salem, who has come from Niger for UPSAT training in Tunisia, being assessed in a spacious classroom. “JI live in Niamey and I come from a family of doctors. I chose Tunisia for the quality of its learning and its environment says the student.
In the hallways, Ryan, a 19-year-old French-Tunisian, is chatting with the director of the establishment. He came to pursue his UPSAT training, because ” Science and sports enthusiasts Choose a course in physiotherapy. ” I knew that the teaching was very comprehensive here, so I had no difficulty in choosing this school. he explains.
Recognized by the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research and the Ministry of Health, UPSAT (Faculty of Private Health Sciences) is the pioneer of paramedical university education in Tunisia, along with the Central University. UPSAT was created in 2001, which has four campuses in Sousse, Tunis and Sfax, and joined the Honoris group in 2018.
Approximately 2000 students (Bac + 3 to Bac + 5) are trained there in Nursing Sciences, Anesthesia and Resuscitation and Medical Imaging. At the same time, the Masters in Health is available for physiotherapists. The network has already trained more than 3,000 health professionals since its inception.
” We have developed a partnership with two platforms: Le Wagon and Crossknowledge to create a unique course, the Honoris 21st Century Skills Certificate, which will allow learners to acquire soft skills and programming skills. Ilham Mesteri sets out to illustrate the heterogeneity of the knowledge presented in the UPSAT.
The Tunisian branch was established in 2005, not far from the Honoris Medical Simulation Center and the major hospitals of the city with which it has many agreements.
” Our students are supervised by Chiefs of Medical Services. We employ temporary teachers, they are university and hospital students, and we have developed partnerships with all Tunisian hospitals that host our clinical and practical teachings. UPSAT General Manager.
The cost of training for physiotherapists is 30,000 dinars (about 10,000 euros for three years). ” The average price of a one-year medical assistant training is about 8,000 Tunisian dinars per year. Access to education is synonymous with social mobility in Tunisia, and it is an investment Tunisians are willing to make says Amal Bakkar, UPSAT Tunisia Director.