EDID Program Manager:
Tel: (+237) 677753030
Cameroon is experiencing a huge crisis in human resources for health with approximately 1.1 physicians and 7.8 nurses and midwives per 10,000 populations (MOH, 2011). The situation is even worse when it comes to rehabilitative health services such as physiotherapy (PT), occupational therapy (OT) and community based rehabilitation (CBR). According to the World Confederation of Physiotherapy (WCPT) 2019 Report, an estimated 250 physiotherapists exist in Cameroon, representing an extremely low rate of 0.10 physiotherapists per 10,000 populations. This compromises access to quality PT services for those in need, especially children, youths and adults with impairment, whereas, it is demonstrated that quality rehabilitation significantly improves quality of life for persons with disabilities. In a whole, Cameroon currently experiences an insufficient supply of trained personnel as well as limited training opportunities. While there is low coverage of PT and CBR services due to inadequate trained providers, OT services are completely unavailable.
To address this gap, The Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services (CBCHS) has secured support from a Dutch based organization, AFAS Foundation via its longstanding partner the Liliane Fonds (LF) to the Rehabilitation Compass Inclusive (RCI) project in Cameroon. The project will partner with the Ministry of Social Affairs, state owned Universities and other Higher Institutions of learning in the elaboration of training programs for PT, OT and CBR professionals in the country over a period of four years.
Given the importance of this project with regards to its extensive network of stakeholders and the future impact for the country, a major project lunch, under the auspices of the Minister of Social Affairs has been planned for June 22 involving all key stakeholders in and out of Cameroon. This Term of Reference provides details about the project lunch.
Rational of the project
In Cameroon PT and CBR services are only minimally provided by a few trained providers. While MINAS and partners including the CBCHS have been making increasing efforts to improve the quality of PT and CBR services, huge gaps have remained. There is no institution providing formal training in CBR in Cameroon. With regards to PT, no standard curriculum that can guarantee the quality of training exists that meets the rehabilitation needs of children, youths and adults with disabilities. Consequently, the few providers of PT services are in dire need of certified training. Worse, no OT services are offered as a result of lack of such training in-country.
In its over eight decades of providing clinical and public health services in Cameroon, the Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services (CBCHS) continues to collaborate with multiple actors within the country and beyond to increase access to quality essential care. In the area of disability, CBCHS is now a major technical partner to the Ministry of Social Affairs and collaborates with this ministerial department to explore innovative, effective and efficient solutions to the multiple health and socio-economic challenges faced especially by persons with impairments.
The RCI initiative aims to close rehabilitation gaps that identified in a research conducted by CBCHS in 2019 in which it was found that CBR workers and PT staff do not have the required skills to address the rehabilitation needs of persons with disabilities This project will support the development of curricula and set up a certificate, diploma, bachelors and Master training programs for these services providers. Partnerships will be established with training institutions in and out of Cameroon namely; university of Dschang, University of Buea, University of Bmaneda, Univesite des Montagnes, Baptist Institute of Health Sciences and the Baptist Training School for Health Personnel. Partnerships for mentoring will be established with the University of Cape Town and others with renowned experience in running such programs to ensure quality. The overall aim of the project is to contribute to the attainment of WHO’s Rehabilitation for All in 2030 global agenda by facilitating the availability, accessibility and affordability of quality rehabilitation services to children, youths and adults with disabilities in Cameroon.
Objective of launching the project
The specific aims of this project lunch are to:
- Educate the general public on the importance of quality rehabilitation services for children, youths and adults with disabilities
- Inform the general public about the Rehabilitation Compass for Inclusion Project
- Create awareness on the training opportunities and careers available through the upcoming training programs for Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy and Community Based Rehabilitation.