Original Research

Graduates’ perceptions of prosthetic and orthotic education and clinical practice in Tanzania and Malawi

Lina Magnusson, Harold G. Shangali, Gerd Ahlström
African Journal of Disability | Vol 5, No 1 | a142 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ajod.v5i1.142 | © 2016 Lina Magnusson, Harold G. Shangali, Gerd Ahlström | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 24 June 2014 | Published: 10 June 2016

About the author(s)

Lina Magnusson, Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Lund University, Sweden
Harold G. Shangali, Department of Prosthetics and Orthotics, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine, Kilimanjaro Christian Medical University College, Tumaini University Makumira, Tanzania, United Republic of
Gerd Ahlström, Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Lund University, Sweden


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Abstract

Background: Maintaining and improving the quality of prosthetics and orthotics education at the Tanzania Training Centre for Orthopaedic Technologists is essential for the provision of appropriate prosthetics and orthotics services in African countries.

Objectives: To describe how Tanzanian and Malawian graduates’ of the Diploma in Orthopaedic Technology perceive their education and how it could be improved or supplemented to facilitate clinical practice of graduates.

Methods: Nineteen graduates from the diploma course in orthopaedic technology were interviewed and phenomenographic analysis was applied to the data.

Results: Seven descriptive categories emerged, namely varied awareness of the profession before starting education, well-equipped teaching facilities, aspects lacking in the learning context, need for changes in the curriculum, enabling people to walk is motivating, obstacles in working conditions and the need for continuous professional development. All participants perceived possible improvements to the content and learning environment.

Conclusions: Prosthetic and orthotic education can be better provided by modifying the content of the diploma programme by dedicating more time to the clinical management of different patient groups and applied biomechanics as well as reducing the programme content focusing on technical aspects of prosthetic and orthotic practice. Graduates were not prepared for the rural working conditions and the graduates desired continued training.

Keywords: orthotic; prosthetic; education; Malawi; Tanzania; assistive device; assistive technology; developing countries; low-income country


Keywords

orthotic; prosthetic; education; Malawi; Tanzania; assistive device; assistive technology; developing countries; low-income country

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Crossref Citations

1. Professionals’ perspectives of prosthetic and orthotic services in Tanzania, Malawi, Sierra Leone and Pakistan
Lina Magnusson
Prosthetics and Orthotics International  vol: 43  issue: 5  first page: 500  year: 2019  
doi: 10.1177/0309364619863617