A series of events in Dushanbe have marked a milestone in World Physiotherapy’s activities to launch the first entry level physiotherapist education programme in Tajikistan.
Sidy Dieye, World Physiotherapy head of programmes and development, said: “This series of events marks a milestone in Tajikistan's healthcare education, setting the foundation for a robust and skilled physiotherapy workforce in the country.”
The events, which took place in December 2023, included a specialised clinical training workshop, an interactive session for students, and an online presentation to regional health directors across Tajikistan. These events are part of the Strengthening Rehabilitation Services in Health Systems (SRSH) project, a collaboration between Momentum Wheels for Humanity, World Physiotherapy, the Republican Medical College (RMC), and the WHO office in Tajikistan, funded by USAID. The SRSH project is led by Sidy Dieye, World Physiotherapy's head of programmes and development.
The workshop, 11-22 December 2023, focused on neurology and was designed to equip physiotherapist educators with advanced skills and knowledge. World Physiotherapy SRSH project mentors Heather Dawson, Nihad Almasri, and Ann Nicholson led the workshop, and the guest lecturer was Simone Dorsch, of the World Physiotherapy specialty group International Neurological Physical Therapy Association (INPA) and member of Australian Physiotherapy Association, who generously donated essential teaching equipment, including scales, blocks, counters, and non-slip materials. Sidy Dieye also took part in the workshop.
The first cohort of 21 physiotherapy students took part in the interactive session, 16 December 2023, at RMC in Dushanbe. The session was initiated by Shahlo Ashuriyon, RMC director, and included presentations by Ismoil Odilzoda, RMC deputy director, Sidy Dieye, Heather Dawson, Nihad Almasri, and Ann Nicholson. The presentations focused on the opportunities and prospects within the physiotherapy profession.
Sidy Dieye also took part in a weekly online meeting for directors of regional health across Tajikistan. Sodikhon Jamshed, deputy minister for health and social protection, invited Sidy to address more than 100 directors of regional health to inform them about the launch of the first physiotherapist education programme in Tajikistan and integrate the programme into the national health care framework. The meeting also highlighted the need to support students during and after their education and to bridge the gaps between clinical practice and educational settings.