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Usefulness and Challenges in Using WHO’s Electronic EPI-IMCI Course for Training Mentors in Zambia


The Maternal and Child Survival Program (MCSP) is a global, $560 million, 5-year cooperative agreement funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to introduce and support scale-up of high-impact health interventions among USAID's 25 maternal and child health priority countries, as well as other countries. In November 2016, the USAID Mission in Zambia invited MCSP to begin providing technical assistance to the Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child, and Adolescent Health and Nutrition Continuum of Care (CoC) Program. 

Despite Zambia's adaptation of Integrated Management of Childhood Illness (IMCI) as a strategy to reduce high child mortality, the country was facing implementation challenges due to gaps including lack of training and supportive supervision of health care workers. District-level mentoring teams were formed to improve clinical performance of facility-based health care workers. However, since the mentorship program was initiated primarily for emergency obstetric and newborn care and infectious diseases, mentors lacked knowledge and competency in the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) and IMCI. 

This document discusses the rapid assessment of MCSP's initiative to orient the mentors on EPI and IMCI using the electronic course developed by the World Health Organization's (WHO's) Africa Regional Office. The purpose of the assessment was to understand the usefulness of the course for mentors and the challenges they faced in using the training tool.

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