Quality of care and patient safety – first accreditation in Benin

10 February 2020

CINOP Global, together with Cordaid and the University of Lausanne (UNIL/IUFRS), executed a project for institutional capacity strengthening of the educational system at the Institut National Médico Sanitaire (INMeS) at Cotonou. This has led to the first accreditation of training courses in a public University in Benin, an outcome that we are all very proud of.

There is a high demand for basic social services in Benin, including health care. Maternal and child mortality rates are high due to poor accessibility of care and maternity services, particularly for women. The quality of care and the equipment are insufficient, and there is undervaluation of human health resources. Moreover, the security of patients is not always optimal, since nurses and midwifes often have had insufficient training and coaching.

Our client / donor

The Institut National Medico Sanitaire (INMeS) provides training for nurses and midwifes at Bachelor level and is part of the university of Abomey-Calavi. INMeS asked NUFFIC to support its institutional development: to start courses on MSc level, and to support quality management of the trainings. NUFFIC, a Dutch organization for internationalisation in education accepted to give a grant in the NICHE programme, funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This programme aims at strengthening institutional capacities in post-secondary education and vocational training in developing countries.

The challenge

The major challenge at INMeS was to improve the quality of the organisational and educational system, and to make it more favourable to employment. In order to reach quality standards, INMeS had to comply with the standards from Conseil Africain et Malgache pour l’Enseignement Supérieur (CAMES). This is an African institute, responsible for assurance of the quality in the educational system in French speaking countries. They developed the standards and norms for the training courses, the research and institutional management of universities, and higher education institutes. In Benin, not a single public higher education school had been accredited untill now. That is why the diploma and certificates from the graduates met difficulties in international recognition and served mostly for the national job-market.

Our solution

We developed, together with INMeS, a road map to improve on key issues. This road map consists of planning for capacitiy development such as the establishment of a strategic plan, a human resource plan, a gender plan, a manual for rules and regulation, internship management, stakeholder management, quality management and even the upgrade of the level of individual teachers (to MSc of even PhD level). After implementation of these improvements, we started with the University Centre of Pedagogy and Quality Assurance (CPUAQ/UAC) from the UAC to train the staff on Quality assurances aligned to the references developed by CAMES. Based on an auto-evaluation on the multiple criteria, INMeS wrote an evaluation report which was submitted to CAMES.

The result

At a final stage, CAMES organised an external evaluation mission to check whether all the variables were met by the verification of all necessary proves. The outcome was that the courses for Nursery and Midwifery on BSc level were accredited for five years. This makes that the diplomas from INMeS have an added value because the accreditation gives them an international recognition in the health teaching institutes in Western Africa.

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