A group from Africa visited a regional health body to find out more about a support scheme that is going to be established in their country for the first time.
Delegates from the Ghana Health Service and the University of Ghana came to Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust to learn about setting up an occupational therapy service.
For the last 15 years, Northumbria Healthcare has worked with colleagues in Tanzania to provide training in a number of areas including occupational therapy, physiotherapy and laparoscopic surgery and delivered major health benefits for patients.
In Northumberland and North Tyneside, occupational therapists work in hospitals and the community to help patients overcome or adapt to an illness, injury or disability and give advice or arrange special equipment for the home.
During the five-day visit, the group met occupational therapists and saw first-hand the benefits they bring to patients. They also learned about the trust’s plans for its Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital, which will open next year.
Dr Gbenga Afolabi, interim deputy medical director at Northumbria Healthcare, who is leading the collaboration, said: “We were pleased to welcome our guests from Ghana and are delighted to work with them to help them set up the country’s first occupational therapy service.
“As a result of our work with colleagues in Tanzania, we have a wealth of experience of developing healthcare services in low income countries and we relish the prospect of using our expertise to support our partners in Ghana.”