Call to conduct research on health, illness patterns
Hakim Hayat

AS ADVANCED scientific knowledge through medical research has proven to be valuable to global human health, especially in providing better healthcare for patients, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) should conduct more in-depth research on Brunei’s population to assist the country in achieving an optimal health policy development, Her Royal Highness Princess Hajah Rashidah Sa’adatul Bolkiah said in a sabda yesterday.

HRH officiated the 10th International Nursing and Midwifery Conference (INMC) and the opening of the new extension building of Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa’adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences (PAPRSB IHS) in UBD. Also present at the event was HRH Princess Hajah Majeedah Nuurul Bolkiah.

HRH added such an endeavour by UBD would inculcate sharpened research focus and capacity for a knowledgeable generation in line with its vision to be a top Asian university.

For many years, HRH said, Brunei Darussalam has benefitted from studies conducted by others from different corners of the world. Hence it is both timely and important to conduct more research into patterns of health and illness and associated factors pertaining to our own population, taking into account aspects specific to our community, our genetic make-up, environment and culture.

Such a study, HRH said, can also focus on important health issues that we face here, including childhood development, health related youth and social issues, obesity, diabetes, reproductive health, cancer, cerebrovascular disease and ageing.

“The information gained will be extremely valuable to Brunei in health policy develop-ment and in optimising healthcare delivery that will ultimately result in a healthier nation,” HRH added.

Meanwhile, referring to the theme of the 10th INMC “Advancing Education and Practice to Global Health Challenges”, HRH noted that it not only explores global health issues but also addresses future challenges for the nursing and midwifery profession.

HRH said as the roles of nursing and midwifery over the years have evolved and expanded considerably, in order to rise up to challenges, these professionals have to regularly upgrade and update themselves in order to manage increasing complexities in healthcare and rapidly changing trends in global health issues.

Noting the vast development UBD has achieved in providing a comprehensive nursing and midwifery education curriculum together with a robust continuing professional development prog-ramme that meets international and professional benchmarks, HRH said it is also crucial for the PAPRSB IHS to constantly review and update its teaching and learning approaches and promote innovative teaching methods such as problem-based learning, team and case-based learning and the use of clinical simulation to promote continuous life-long learning.

HRH said students will also need other skill sets, like proficiency in communication, team-building and leadership and to prepare for the real life environment of healthcare delivery.

“In this regard, inter-professional education with students from other health disciplines will be useful in building a culture of teamwork and cooperation amongst the different health professionals trained at UBD,” HRH added. - Borneo Bulletin (27 June 2014)