Site News from CHAMPS Ethiopia
May 12, 2018
The following is an update from the CHAMPS Ethiopia newsletter. Read more to learn about their recent progress and future programmatic steps.
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The last couple of months have seen some important achievements. We have been given support from the Ethiopian Islamic Affairs Supreme Council for CHAMPS work in Ethiopia. The team traveled to Addis to discuss the work of CHAMPS with the Supreme Council, such that an authoritative legal opinion could be given from a ‘Mufti’ (legal scholar) for a Fatwa – a response to a question posed by an individual or a court of law, in this case on the work of CHAMPS and the acceptability of Minimally Invasive Tissue Sampling (MITS). In other areas, laboratory infrastructure is complete, and remaining laboratory equipment is en-route to Harar.
We held our second Scientific Advisory Committee meeting at the Ethiopian Public Health Institute, in Addis. Many thanks to all those who attended and gave us their time and advice.
Our social science team conducted the first Training of Trainers (ToT) for Woreda and Kebele administrators. Subsequent training for religious leaders, community based organizations (Iddir and Afoosha), health extension workers and lead mothers in the Women’s Development Army will be given in both Harar and Kersa. These will include information about CHAMPS objectives and activities, simple understanding of MITS, the patient journey, and plans for sharing this information with the community to create awareness. We are also supporting health promotion activities in our engagement, including information on nutrition, sanitation and hygiene.
The Community Advisory Board has given practical feedback on our community engagement plan, as well as on our approach to taking MITS consent and interacting with grieving families. We have created a fifteen minute radio pilot, in both Amharic and Afaan Oromo, where we introduce CHAMPS, MITS, and answer questions from the community. Sections of the pilot have been shared with the ToT participants and we intend to continue developing future radio content.
What is coming up?
- Our laboratory histotechnicians and clinicians will be trained with ISGlobal and Centro de investigação de Saúde de Manhiça (CISM) in Mozambique, in histopathology and MITS.
- Our shipments of equipment will arrive to complete the laboratory.
- The CHAMPS SBS team will visit to follow up on our community engagement activities, support us during data analysis, provide training on compassionate interviewing, and to build our capacity through a workshop on report writing.