Health workers told to access latest info online


HEALTH workers in Arawa, Bougainville, have been told to access the latest health information on the internet free of charge.
It follows a five-day course conducted by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on the Hinari access to research in health programme.
Since last year, WHO has involved more than 150 health professionals from 10 provinces in a series of workshops on Hinari.
Hinari  is an online system that provides free or cheap access to thousands of medical and scientific books and journals in low and middle-income countries.
“We can now access up-to-date information instead of relying on textbooks,” participant Myrtle Sammy, a tutor at the Arawa School of Nursing, said.
WHO country representative Dr Luo Dapeng said the quest for knowledge and information was the key to better health services and could save lives.
But, he said, for low income countries, especially in remote places, the latest health and medical information was not easy to access.
Dapeng said this usually came with a huge cost “that derails learning and hinders development”.
“Subscriptions to printed journals are typically very expensive. This means that people – including researchers, scientists and students – often cannot access infomation,” he said.
He said Hinari  “connects hospitals, universities and research institutes with the most up-to-date scientific and medical literature”.
“Thus, distance and budget are no longer barriers to information that can save lives,” he said.
“Today, using Hinari, health workers may be able to access up to 14,000 e-journals and 33,000 online books in biomedical and related social sciences at very low to no cost.”
WHO has so far conducted Hinari  trainings in Goroka, Chimbu, Madang and Bougainville.