Distance Learning Programme

There is an urgent need for postgraduate materials for use in the training of primary health care professionals. Newly graduated general practicioners or family doctors with several years in practice are obliged to train themshelves if they want to run a family medicine practice. For nurses, postgraduate learning is necessary in order to train and enable themshelves to obtain an up-to-date knowlwdge in their field.

To ensure the students of postgraduate courses (either family doctors or nurses, who work by individual time-schedule) to be able to participate in education the alternative is the self- and home-education, that is distance learning. This form of training will result in reduction in time, and consequently in costs.

The project aims to provide not only distance learning materials for pediatriciants and home nurses in primary health care, but it has the objective to develop distance learning programme including learning materials as well as the educational methods.

Target Sectors and Target Groups Involved

Target sectors of Development of Distance Learning Programme project are:

-education and


Education and training involve family doctors as mentors of postgraduate students or of GPs wanting to obtain specialization in family medicine, nurses who train themshelves as well as their peers. During these activities the professionals use textbooks and publications as source of the latest information and as teaching materials. Those are available in Hungarian translation. The latter is a great advantage of the project considering the lack of good command of foreign languages among medical professionals in Hungary. Thus target groups consist of family doctors, postgraduate students and nurses.

Expected State of the Sector at the End of the Programme

The production of up-to-date instructional materials (books, readers, audio-video programmes etc.) and development of effective educational methods would solve the problems of training/re-training of family doctors and nurses on the regional level and these materials could be utilised by all the Hungarian institutions (especially Resource and Training Centres) involved in this kind of training. The proposed programme development can serve as a basis for the high-quality, up-to-date training and re-training with identical requirements as the most important factor of quality assurance. The printed and multimedia programmes can also be efficiently used in training medical students and nurses. Self-assessment in the form of multiple choice questions is also available on computerised network.

To provide family doctors with learning materials is not the single objective of the project. Its overall purpose is to introduce distance learning techniques in primary health using learning materials, tutorials, workshops, phone-conference and many other ways of connecting students.

The aim of PHEIDIAS project

is to develop a distance learning programme consisted of educational methods such as tutorials, peer-groups and different self-assessment techniques, and learning materials (printed, audio-video-multimedia materials) based on European models for the elimination of the drawbacks in the field of training family pediatriciants and home nurses.

The project will help to reduce the time spent travelling to lectures and seminars, and be educationally more effective by allowing the students to learn at their own pace, because the distance learning materials can be used in the student's home or surgery. Not only preparational, instructional and demonstrational materials could be provided for students, but multiple choice questions for self-evaluation can also be available on CD ROM or Internet.

This project will assess the feasibility of using distance learning materials and structures in the context of the educational needs of Hungarian health professionals. The project will develop distance learning materials on a pediatric as well as home nursing topic in the postgraduate curriulum for primary health care. On the other hand it will establish by experimentation what support structures are needed for distance learning programme, for example tutors, peer groups, tutorials, assessment. Resource and Training Centres may serve as technical and organisational basis for distance learning programmes.

The specific activities of the PHEIDIAS project will be carried out in 8 Key Tasks (preparation phases).