Located in West Africa with an estimated population of 11.5 million, Benin had five hospital beds per 10,000 people as of 2008.¹ In an effort to increase access to safe healthcare, in 2016 the Ministry of Health invited Mercy Ships and SPECT to provide medical capacity building training in the port city of Cotonou.
From October 2016 - May 2017, in partnership with Mercy Ships, SPECT provided a sterile processing training program to increase health care workers’ knowledge and skills while contributing to safer work environments. Within this timeframe, SPECT supported a needs assessment with the Ministry of Health in 29 healthcare facilities across southern Benin. SPECT then trained 92 workers from 44 facilities on recommended sterile processing practices. Following the training, 56 pressure cooker sterilizers - including SPECT's innovative instrument basket and a heating source - were distributed to facilities that didn't previously have a way of sterilizing instruments.
"Before, when we went to work we did what we wanted to because we had no idea of how to handle the instruments properly, but now, with the training we take our work seriously and do the right thing at the right time."- Training participant
"Now we know the importance of cleaning and disinfection – we respect the different steps. For example, for the cleaning we now take our time to remove the gross soil and blood clots and we inspect (the instrument). We didn’t do that before.” - Training participant
Research findings on the impact of our training in Benin can be found in the Antimicrobial Resistance and Infection Control journal.