MPact Pilots A New Online Course on Gay Men’s Health with The Center for Public Health and Human Rights at Johns Hopkins University

September 18, 2020

MPact and the Center for Public Health and Human Rights (CPHHR) in the Department of Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University are partnering to roll-out an online training program for health professionals in Botswana, Kenya, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe on the essentials of gay and bisexual men’s health. This partnership builds upon a previous collaboration in 2014 when the two entities developed a curriculum to train healthcare providers on gay men’s health issues. MPact and the CPHHR developed this online training program in collaboration with community-based organizations including Bonela, Legabibo, and Men for Health in Botswana; Ishtar, MAAYGO, and PEMA in Kenya; CENTA in Tanzania; and GALZ, Sexual Rights Centre, and TIRZ in Zimbabwe.

Earlier this year, over 150 health professionals from these four Sub-Saharan countries applied for a limited number of spots to attend an in-person training on gay men’s health that was to be hosted by MPact in Johannesburg, South Africa. Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, MPact is now offering the training in an online format to a larger cohort of participants with the same goals as the in-person training. More than 60 participants are currently enrolled in the training.

General medical, nursing and allied health education curricula typically provide inadequate knowledge, skills, and sensitivity training to prepare healthcare professionals to deal with the unique health issues and challenges faced by gay men. This training helps fill that gap directly by providing clinical knowledge and competency. Further, in an effort to leverage local community expertise, the online learning components of the training are coupled with weekly group sessions led by 13 mentors from partnering community-based organizations. Like all of MPact’s unique in-person trainings, peer facilitation and sharing of local best practices will be central to our methodology with this virtual training as well.

This online training will also leverage the newly revised handbook on the mental and physical health of gay and bisexual men developed collaboratively by MPact and the CPHHR at Johns Hopkins University. The handbook will be publicly launched later this year.

For more details about this online training and our revised handbook, please contact us at contact@mpactglobal.org