Improving Access to Health Research Literature for Higher Education Institutions in Nepal
Authors: Devkota, B., Pathak, R.S., Simkhada, P.P. and van Teijlingen, E.
Conference: 13th World Congress on Public Health
Dates: 23-27 April 2012
The lack of access to published research papers and lack of knowledge regarding how best to access up-to-date published research is a problem in the developing countries. The limited or no access to published literature on the latest evidences hampers implementation of the evidence –based practice. This paper presents findings of the need assessment conducted under a Partnership to improve Access to Research literature for higher education Institutions in Nepal (PARI), a project funded by the Department for International Development (DFID) with the Development Partnerships in Higher Education (DelPHE) program. The study used self-administered questionnaire for the higher education teachers (N=244), librarians (N=15), student focused group discussions (N=4), key informant interviews (N=12) and review of college statistics/record sheet (N=14). In total, 15 out of the total 40 higher education institutions of Nepal offering health sciences education above Bachelors level were included in the study. The study found that more than nine in ten staff had a computer at home. Just over half (54.1%) of female staff had work email and three-quarters of men, whilst all men (100%) and 84.7% of women had a personal email account. The proportion of staff teaching research methods varied little across institutions (39.1% to 42.5%), but across disciplines, it ranged widely from 25.9% (Pharmacy) to 71.1% (Public Health). Less than half (48%) have published research papers in peer-reviewed journals. Females seem less likely to publish (32%) compared to males (68%). Only 42.9% of the students were taught about accessing research databases. The main reason for not teaching it was its absence in curricula (91.0%). The study concludes that systematic reviewing was new to majority of the Nepalese academics attending the study. A more supportive research environment and strategic planning is required to build research capacity of the health professionals and to undertake the evidence-based practice. Learning Objectives: Participants will develop an understanding of use of electronic research literature in higher education institutions in Nepal and discuss on the ways forward.
Preferred by: Edwin van Teijlingen