A Big Investment in Education Delivers a Huge Impact in Healthcare

A Big Investment in Education Delivers a Huge Impact in Healthcare

August 12, 2015 at 06:08pm

GE has just announced a $1 billion investment in the training and education of medical practitioners around the world. But why the focus on education and training in healthcare?

Because it can make a big difference.

The program is expected to positively impact the medical care provided to more than 300 million people around the world. For perspective, that’s nearly the population of the Middle East and North Africa.

The initiative is focused on developing solutions geared to meeting local needs in communities across the globe. It will help GE commercial partners improve healthcare from the ground up. This will include improved training programs and solutions for physicians, radiologists, medical technology experts, midwives, nurses, biomedical engineers and others.

The project’s impact also will be huge because, as the World Health Organization (WHO) says, there is a “severe global health workforce crisis with critical shortages, imbalanced skill mix and uneven geographical distribution of health professionals, leaving millions without access to health services.”

Healthcare leaders here in the Middle East and Africa also cite the importance of training. A survey of doctors, nurses, other healthcare professionals and administrators in the region found that 77% say the best way to raise healthcare standards in their countries is through the training and education of healthcare practitioners to improve skills and enhance capacity. The survey is part of a recently released GE white paper entitled “Education Solutions for Better Health Outcomes.”

Over the next five years, the initiative will help partners across the globe address this situation through the development of its educational offerings to reach more than 2 million healthcare professionals worldwide by 2020, including many in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey region.

GE Healthcare will provide on-the-ground, online and remote training as part of its partnership with customers to improve skills for real-life medical situations. The training will include new clinical, product applications, technical and leadership training and education.

In the region, this investment will continue an ongoing $100 million GE Healthcare investment in skills development, which since 2013 has been delivering technical, clinical and leadership training to more than 10,000 healthcare professionals in the region, with more than 1,000 courses and 50,000 hours delivered.

Some specific examples:

  • A $100 million commitment announced in February 2015 for the development and delivery of localized education and training in the Middle East, Africa, Turkey, Russia and CIS regions through 2018.
  • The 2013 opening of the Healthcare Skills and Training Institute, launched in partnership with King Fahad Medical City in Saudi Arabia, which has trained more than 6,000 healthcare professionals.
  • Providing 150+ hours of training for 100+ medical and support staff, combined with local disease awareness efforts, has resulted in the breast cancer screening of more than 20,000 women as part of the Saudi Ministry of Health’s National Breast Cancer Screening Program, a project supported by GE and Komen.
  • A GE Healthcare agreement with the Egyptian Ministry of Health to boost the country’s healthcare technology management system, which includes plans to establish a Biomed Center of Excellence in Egypt.
  • Across the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) GE Healthcare has trained 400+ hospital staff in change management and performance improvement methods across 20 hospitals, resulting in reduced surgical waiting lists by up to 58% and a 47% improvement in operating room utilization.

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