• Vol. 36 No. 9, 765–769
  • 15 September 2007

Outcome-based Approach in Development of a Disaster Management Course for Healthcare Workers



Introduction: The Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka provided voluntary healthcare services during the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami. At that time the faculty recognised the need to prepare the healthcare system for future disasters by enhancing the capability of healthcare workers. The development and implementation of a disaster management course for healthcare workers was identified as a priority. Method: An outcome-based approach was used to develop the curriculum. Qualitative and quantitative methods were used to identify the core competencies and outcomes that healthcare workers need to achieve at the end of the course. The content, teaching learning methods and assessments were aligned with the course outcomes. The course consists of 9 core modules and an elective research module. Formative and summative assessment methods were included. Conclusion: Training is an important component of disaster management. The outcome-based approach provides a useful framework for developing such training programmes and ensures that needs are addressed.

Sri Lanka is an island nation in the Indian Ocean with a population of 20 million. It is a multi-ethnic country with 82.7% Sinhalese, 9.4%Tamils and 7.9% Muslims.1,2 It has faced many man-made and natural disasters in the past. The war in the northern and eastern provinces of the country could be considered as the most serious man-made disaster during the last two decades. Nearly 60,000 people have died due to the war and many more are disabled. Among the natural disasters, the most common are floods during the monsoon period.

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