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Strengthening international connections: a review of 2012

A review of the international activity in the Faculty of Health and Social Care in 2012, as we look forward to a new and exciting year ahead.
17 July 2013

During the second half of last year the Faculty of Health and Social Care continued to make new connections abroad as well as building on and strengthening our exiting established relationships with countries such as Singapore.

The Faculty started to build on a new working relationship with Saudi Arabia, following a meeting attended by Professor Mary Lovegrove, Faculty International Lead and Dr Michelle Spruce, Head of Department Allied Health, for universities who were interested in providing Allied Health training in Saudi Arabia. As a result of this meeting, the Faculty put forward a proposal for BSc Diagnostic Radiography and Diabetes Education, to be delivered by a 'Flying Faculty'.

In November 2012, Michelle visited Saudi Arabia where she was invited to meet with the Minister for Health, Ministry for International Relations and The National Guard Hospital. At the meeting with the Ministry of Health it was revealed that our module of 'Flying Faculty' particularly met their needs and the visit also lead to further introductions to Nursing Director leads who have now expressed an interest in developing nursing programmes. Following her first successful visit, Michelle was invited back to Saudi Arabia in December for further discussions around this proposal and as a result the Faculty has now been asked to put forward a proposal for Adult Nursing by the Ministry of Interior.

Professor Mary Lovegrove, Faculty International Lead continued her work in South East and East Asia and shared her expertise presenting at two events. Mary presented on "Transformational Radiography Clinical Leaders The Key To Improving The Patient Experience" to colleagues at the 27th Malaysia—Singapore Radiographer's Conference and then went to Singapore to deliver a lecture on the "Development of Clinical Leadership in the Allied Health Professionals." This lecture was aimed to focus attention on developing clinical leadership behaviours in a time where allied health services are experiencing increasing numbers of patients.

The Faculty also has new opportunity for research in Korea, Professor Nicola Robinson, Professor of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Integrated Health set up research collaborations with both the Jaseng Hospital of Korean Eastern Medicine and the institute and the Korean Institute of Oriental medicine. Nicola gave a lecture to 200 doctors at the Jaseng Hospital, which was appointed by the Ministry of Health and Welfare government in 2007 as the only hospital in Korea specialising in the treatment of the spine. The hospital has both inpatient and outpatient facilities with western medical diagnostic facilities such as MRIs and provides non-surgical interventions and integrated care for over 900,000 cases annually. Jaseng is additionally pioneering in a technique unique to the hospital, Motion Style Acupuncture Treatment (MSAT) which is used for patients with acute muscular skeletal problems.

Whilst in Korea Nicola also presented at the 16th International Congress of Oriental Medicine 'The future of medicine – traditional medicine', in Seoul. A total of 16,000 delegates registered for the conference mainly from Korea, China, Japan and Taiwan, Nicola said: "the breadth of laboratory, experimental and clinical trial research was impressive."

Ghana and Nigeria also had a visit from a Health and Social Care member of staff in 2012, Professor Jane Wills, Professor of Health Promotion delivered a workshop for the Public Health Division of the Ghana Health Service on evidence-informed decision making. The workshop considered what is known about effective approaches to key issues such as promoting the uptake of insecticide treated nets to prevent malaria and promoting the uptake of measles vaccination.

Jane then went to Nigeria and delivered two lectures on public health priorities in Nigeria and the skills and competences needed for public health practice. These open public lectures attracted strong audiences who welcomed the opportunity to discuss key issues. Travel was restricted at the time in the northern region and one small college in Northern Nigeria flew 10 students to Lagos for the lecture.

LSBU has an active student recruitment programme in Nigeria as part of its international strategy. These public lectures were designed to stimulate interest in the subject area and the benefits of acquiring a qualification in public health from LSBU either by studying in London, or through in-country provision by the team. The MSc Public Health and Health Promotion course currently has five students from Nigeria.

As the New Year begins, the Faculty is looking forward to the continuing developments in working with other countries to provide better healthcare both at home and away.