The Task Force’s International Trachoma Initiative (ITI) is helping to bring comprehensive trachoma elimination strategies to public health professionals around the world by supporting the development of the first massive open online course (MOOC) on the topic.
The free, web-based course titled “Eliminating Trachoma” is led by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and provides instruction about how to implement trachoma elimination strategies. ITI contributed a module about how to plan, prepare, and execute mass drug administration as part of the comprehensive ‘SAFE’ strategy for trachoma elimination. The module details how ITI manages Pfizer’s antibiotic donation for the prevention and treatment of blinding trachoma.
“This MOOC is an innovative solution to a perennial problem– how to keep program planners and implementers spread across 40 countries up-to-date on policy and best practices in a rapidly changing environment,” said ITI Director Paul Emerson, PhD. “The old practice of paper-based manuals and face-to-face training isn’t responsive enough for the current pace of change.”
To date, more than 1,000 people have registered for the MOOC, representing public health agencies at the national, regional, and district levels.
The free five-week course begins Oct. 3. Registration is available at https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/eliminating-trachoma.