GE Foundation, Duke University, and Engineering World Health (EWH) hold the closing ceremony of a Biomedical Equipment Technician cohort in Kigali, Rwanda on November 14, 2012 in conjunction with the Integrated Polytechnic Regional Center (IPRC Kigali). This closing ceremony is the result of a three year long intensive program for hands-on medical equipment repair and maintenance conducted within the nation of Rwanda. Students graduating will receive certificates from IPRC Kigali as Biomedical Equipment Technicians (BMETs).
In addition, IPRC has established a full time ab initio BMET training program with four faculty members and will construct laboratory facilities to support the advancement of the BMET program at their campus in Kigali, Rwanda. The ab initio training is provided through IPRC, with assistance from EWH, with the first group of students beginning study in September 2012 and graduating in June 2015.
GE Foundation, EWH, and Duke University in partnership have been supporting the biomedical field in Rwanda through this program for three years, including on site education delivered by EWH to practicing biomedical equipment technicians from 38 Rwandan public hospitals. This training has had a measured positive impact on the ability of Rwandan hospital BMETs to service and repair critical medical devices that patients depend on. Intensive training sessions have covered math, English, computer skills, healthcare technology management, neonatal technology, sterilizers, laboratory equipment, radiology equipment, patient monitors, surgical equipment, and other types of medical technology.
Next steps for the BMET training program in Rwanda includes a transfer of curriculum and practical skills from EWH to the IPRC BMET program and establishment of continuing education programs. Future program plans also include the establishment of hospital based Centers of Excellence and the expert mentoring of MOH technicians as well as additional expert training on medical equipment for IPRC faculty. These efforts are managed by EWH’s team in Rwanda, including Anna Worm, Costica Uwitonze, and Patrick Higiro.
GE Foundation will fund continuing efforts at IPRC, in cooperation with the Rwandan Ministry of Health, Engineering World Health, and Duke University to ensure well trained Biomedical Equipment Technicians (with the necessary equipment and specialized test tools) are available to support the public health system in Rwanda for years to come.
Delegation from GE-Foundation and the US Ambassador in the Electrical Workshop
EWH Managing Director, US Ambassador, Principal of IPRC Kigali, and the Director of GE Foundation look at Biomedical Equipment presentation
VIP guests at graduation ceremony
BMET Graduates have completed three years of study.