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Evaluation of the Initiative to Strengthen Nurses’ Expanded Programme on Immunization Pre-Service Training in Kenya

Publish Date: December 2017
Author: Iqbal Hossain, Evans Mokaya and Isaac Mugoya

In 2008, the Kenya Ministry of Health (MOH) embarked on a process to strengthen pre-service training for the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) using WHO’s prototype curriculum. Partnering with the WHO, UNICEF and USAID’s Maternal and Child Health Integrated Program (later became USAID’s MCSP), the MOH developed an immunization manual for medical and nursing students, conducted midlevel managers trainings for tutors of the pre-service education institutions across the country, provided them with copies of the updated EPI prototype curriculum and manual, and assisted the pre-service training institutions to improve their clinical practicums for immunization. Between March and April 2017, MCSP conducted an assessment of the outcomes of the pre-service training initiative. MCSP undertook a desk review of the nursing curricula; observed the tutors in their classrooms, students in their clinical practicum sites, and nursing school graduates during their immunization sessions; and conducted in-depth interviews with nursing graduates, health facility managers, and subcounty EPI supervisors.

The study examined the content of the nursing curriculum, tutors’ knowledge and skills, student nurses’ experiences at the clinical practicum sites, graduate nurses’ skills and knowledge, nursing graduates’ perceptions of their training, and managers and subcounty supervisors’ perceptions of the knowledge, skills, and attitudes of nursing graduates. The findings of this study will be useful for further improving the EPI pre-service training in Kenya. They will also be useful for other countries in the region looking to strengthen their EPI pre-service training. MCSP plans to foster cross-learning on the Kenya pre-service training experience with other countries in the region.