UDSM, Norway agency to address ethical dilemmas in clinical practices

THE University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM) in collaboration with Norway’s Centre for Medical Ethics is undertaking a capacity building training of ethicists and healthcare professionals aimed at addressing ethical dilemmas in clinical practices.

Through the Enhancing Ethics and Integrity in Medical Research and Clinical Practice (ETHIMED) project that runs from 2022 – 2026, funded by NORPART (Norwegian Partnership Programme for Global Academic Cooperation) called for handling daily ethical dilemmas emerging in clinical practices.

The project is being implemented by UDSM through the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, University of Oslo (UiO), Norway through the Centre for Medical Ethics and the University of Rwanda to address the emerging challenges in the areas.

Speaking here yesterday, UDSM’s Head of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Dr Michael Lyakurwa expressed the need to incorporate clinical ethics courses into the educational curriculum in health and allied science programmes.

Dr Lyakurwa said under the project, ETHIMED are creating a train-the-trainer programme on clinical ethics, training health practitioners and faculty members in Rwanda and Tanzania in a moral deliberation model, establishing a clinical ethics committee and developing a manual for clinical ethics committees in the country.

He said UDSM’s Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies in collaboration with clinical ethics experts from the University of Oslo have organised a clinical ethics training programme for healthcare professionals in the country.

“The course is essential for the Sub-Saharan context due to increased moral cases in clinical practice. Yet, there are no established clinical ethics support services to assist healthcare professionals in addressing them,” he said.

On his part, Shija Kuhumba, PhD candidate in Clinical Ethics at University of Oslo expressed the need to develop clinical ethics guidelines for healthcare professionals.

“We have been trained on moral case deliberation Centre for Medical Ethics deliberation model, if these models are well integrated into our healthcare settings, they might help handle ethical dilemmas in the clinical practice,” she insisted.

Mr Lucas Kitula from the UDSM was of the opinion that the clinical ethics guidelines would assist healthcare professionals in handling practical issues.

“Such cases as intercultural issues in healthcare settings, religious issues conflicting with biomedical interventions, and allocation of medical resources in the healthcare setting encountering medical resource constraints need such guidelines” said Mr Kitula.

Participants acknowledged the significance and relevance of the training to healthcare settings challenged by numerous ethical dilemmas that bring about complexities in medical decision-making.

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