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Miller M.,National University of Rwanda | Miller M.,University of Colorado at Denver | Phillips B.,University of York
Medical Teacher | Year: 2013

Background: A social-network site is a dedicated website or application which enables users to communicate with each other and share information, comments, messages, videos and images. Aims: This review aimed to ascertain if "social-networking sites have been used successfully in medical education to deliver educational material", and whether "healthcare professionals, and students, are engaging with social-networking sites for educational purposes". Method: A systematic-review was undertaken using the PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses) guidelines. Eight databases were searched with pre-defined search terms, limits and inclusion criteria. Data was extracted into a piloted data-table prior to the narrative-synthesis of the Quality, Utility, Extent, Strength, Target and Setting of the evidence. Results: 1047 articles were identified. Nine articles were reviewed with the majority assessing learner satisfaction. Higher outcome measures were rarely investigated. Educators used Facebook, Twitter, and a custom-made website, MedicineAfrica to achieve their objectives. Conclusions: Social-networking sites have been employed without problems of professionalism, and received positive feedback from learners. However, there is no solid evidence base within the literature that social-networking is equally or more effective than other media available for educational purposes. © 2013 Informa UK Ltd.


Soreide K.,University of Stavanger | Soreide K.,University of Bergen | Alderson D.,University of Birmingham | Bergenfelz A.,Skåne University Hospital | And 9 more authors.
The Lancet | Year: 2013

More than 235 million patients undergo surgery every year worldwide, but less than 1% are enrolled in surgical clinical trials-few of which are international collaborations. Several levels of action are needed to improve this situation. International research collaborations in surgery between developed and developing countries could encourage capacity building and quality improvement, and mutually enhance care for patients with surgical disorders. Low-income and middle-income countries increasingly report much the same range of surgical diseases as do high-income countries (eg, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and the surgical sequelae of metabolic syndrome); collaboration is therefore of mutual interest. Large multinational trials that cross cultures and levels of socioeconomic development might have faster results and wider applicability than do single-country trials. Surgeons educated in research methods, and aided by research networks and trial centres, are needed to foster these international collaborations. Barriers to collaboration could be overcome by adoption of global strategies for regulation, health insurance, ethical approval, and indemnity coverage for doctors.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP-SICA | Phase: ENV.2010.1.2.1-1 | Award Amount: 4.16M | Year: 2011

The HEALTHY FUTURES project is motivated by concern for the health impacts of environmental changes. HEATHLY FUTURES aims to respond to this concern through construction of a disease risk mapping system for three water-related high-impact VBDs (malaria, Rift valley fever and schistosomiasis) in Africa, accounting for environmental/climatic trends and changes in socio-economic conditions to predict future risk. Concentrating on eastern Africa as a study area, HEALTHY FUTURES comprises a comprehensive, inter-disciplinary consortium of health, environment, socio-economic, disease modelling and climate experts in addition to governmental health departments. To achieve its aims, HEALTHY FUTURES will deploy a bottom-up, end-user/stakeholder-focused approach combining field-, laboratory- and library-based research.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP-SICA | Phase: SSH.2011.4.1-2 | Award Amount: 3.50M | Year: 2012

The overall objective of the African Rural-City Connections (RurbanAfrica) project is to explore the connections between rural transformations, mobility, and urbanization processes and analyze how these contribute to an understanding of the scale, nature and location of poverty in sub-Saharan Africa. The RurbanAfrica project will advance the research agenda on rural-city connections in sub-Saharan Africa by addressing a range of crucial components: agricultural transformations, rural livelihoods, city dynamics, and access to services in cities. In this respect the project will challenge a number of generally accepted truths about rural and city development, and the importance and implication of migration in shaping these. It will thereby question the overall negative interpretations of the economic role of rural-urban mobility and migration in sub-Saharan Africa and generate new insights into the relationship between rural-city connections and poverty dynamics. The project will include nine partners; four European, one international, and four sub-Saharan African. RurbanAfrica focuses on four country cases: Rwanda, Tanzania, Cameroon and Ghana and examine in-depth two rural-city connections in each of the case countries. Research is organized into six work packages: Agricultural transformation, rural livelihoods, city dynamics, access to services, knowledge platform and policy dialogue, and synthesis, dissemination and management. Central to the approach is the on-going integration of policy research, policy dialogue, knowledge sharing and empirical research. Through ongoing collaboration between senior and junior researchers from European and sub-Saharan African partners, and co-supervising of PhD students, the project will contribute to capacity building and potentially impact curriculum development. The research and dissemination process will be supported by a scientific advisory board, with members from European and sub-Saharan African research institutions.


Twagirumukiza M.,National University of Rwanda | Twagirumukiza M.,Ghent University | Van Bortel L.M.,Ghent University
Journal of Human Hypertension | Year: 2011

Hypertension is emerging in many developing nations as a leading cause of cardiovascular mortality, morbidity and disability in adults. In sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries it has specificities such as occurring in young and active adults, resulting in severe complications dominated by heart failure and taking place in limited-resource settings in which an individual's access to treatment (affordability) is very limited. Within this context of restrained economic conditions, the greatest gains for SSA in controlling the hypertension epidemic lie in its prevention. Attempts should be made to detect hypertensive patients early before irreversible organ damage becomes apparent, and to provide them with the best possible and affordable non-pharmacological and pharmacological treatment. Therefore, efforts should be made for detection and early management at the community level. In this context, a standardized algorithm of management can help in the rational use of available resources. Although many international and regional guidelines have been published, they cannot apply to SSA settings because the economy of the countries and affordability of the patients do not allow access to advocated treatment. In addition, none of them suggest a clear algorithm of management for limited-resource settings at the community level. In line with available data and analysing existing guidelines, a practical algorithm for management of hypertension at the community level, including treatment affordability, has been suggested in the present work. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited All rights reserved.


News Article | December 17, 2015
Site: phys.org

Specimens collected in Rwanda in 2013 by The Cleveland Museum of Natural History during the first formal praying mantis survey conducted in the African country. Credit: Gavin Svenson A college student working at The Cleveland Museum of Natural History was lead author on the first formal survey of praying mantises in Rwanda, which revealed a 155 percent increase in praying mantis species diversity for the African country. Riley Tedrow, a Case Western Reserve University graduate student pursuing field research for the Museum, participated in two surveys across four locations in Rwanda, including three national parks. The survey was published Oct. 1, 2015 in the journal Zootaxa. Tedrow helped conduct fieldwork in 2013 and 2014 with collaborators at Rwanda's Kitabi College of Conservation and Environmental Management. The team collected 739 insects representing 41 species from Akagera National Park, Nyungwe National Park, Volcanoes National Park and the Arboretum de Ruhande at the National University of Rwanda. Collection methods included sweep netting and light trapping to gather grass, bark, flower and lichen mantises. The survey added 28 new praying mantis species records to Rwanda. These add to the 18 previously recorded praying mantis species for the country. In addition, 20 new praying mantis species were recorded for the region, including neighboring Uganda and Burundi. The study has increased scientists' knowledge of the praying mantis species present in Rwanda by 155 percent. Tedrow discovered and described one new species of praying mantis, Dystacta tigrifrutex (meaning "bush tiger mantis"), in 2014 from the insects collected. Research continues on the specimens already inventoried. "This survey highlights a need for more thorough sampling of the insect fauna of Rwanda," said lead author Tedrow. "Undiscovered diversity is still out there—strange, wonderful and fascinating creatures whose stories I want to tell. With greater levels of biodiversity recorded in this country, we can inform conservation decisions in these important African national parks." Tedrow worked under the direction of co-author Dr. Gavin Svenson, curator of invertebrate zoology at The Cleveland Museum of Natural History. They studied the morphological features of the praying mantis specimens and scoured scientific literature in order to classify and inventory the insects for the survey. "Discovering this region to be so much richer in diversity for such a well-known insect group has broader implications for other plants and animals there," said Svenson. "This research is significant because it builds a baseline of knowledge about the insect ecology in Rwanda. It documents new biodiversity that we did not know existed, which enables us to monitor and track the species that live in these rainforest, savannah and mountain habitats." This study was done as part of Svenson's broader research program, which is focused on the evolutionary patterns of relationship, distribution and complex features of praying mantises. His current research project aims to align new sources of relationship evidence (DNA sequence data) with morphology and other features to create a new and accurate classification system for praying mantises that reflects true evolutionary relationships. Explore further: Study shows orchid mantis more attractive to their prey than real orchids A survey of the praying mantises of Rwanda, including new records (Insecta, Mantodea)


Petry N.,Institute of Food Science and Nutrition | Egli I.,Institute of Food Science and Nutrition | Gahutu J.B.,National University of Rwanda | Tugirimana P.L.,National University of Rwanda | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Nutrition | Year: 2012

Biofortification of plants is a newapproach to combat iron deficiency. Common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris) can be bred with a higher iron concentration but are rich in iron absorption inhibitors, phytic acid (PA), and polyphenols (PP). To evaluate the potential of beans to combat iron deficiency, three iron absorption studies were carried out in 61 Rwandese womenwith low iron status. Studies 1 and 2 compared iron absorption from high and lowPP beans, similar in PA and iron, fed as bean puree in a doublemeal design orwith rice and potatoes as multiplemeals. Study 3 compared iron absorption fromhigh and normal iron beans with similar PP levels and a PA:iron molar ratio, fed with potatoes or rice in multiple meals. Iron absorption was measured as erythrocyte incorporation of stable iron isotopes. In study 1, iron absorption from the high PP bean (3.4%) was 27%lower (P,0.01) than fromlow PP bean (4.7%), butwhen fed inmultiplemeals (study 2), therewas no difference (7 and 7.4%, respectively; P. 0.05). In study 3, iron absorption from the high iron bean (3.8%) was 40% lower (P, 0.001) than from the normal iron bean (6.3%), resulting in equal amounts of iron absorbed. When beans were combined with other meal components in multiple meals, high PP concentration had no negative impact on iron absorption. However, the quantity of iron absorbed from composite meals with high iron beans was no higher than with normal iron beans, indicating that efficacious iron biofortification may be difficult to achieve in beans rich in PA and PP. © 2012 American Society for Nutrition.


Bizoza A.R.,National University of Rwanda | de Graaff J.,Wageningen University
Land Degradation and Development | Year: 2012

Bench terracing has received considerable attention from soil and water conservation (SWC) programmes involved in soil erosion control in Rwanda. It is questioned, however, whether enough attention is paid to the suitability of the soils and to the eventual financial profitability. Terraces may reduce soil erosion and increase production but they should also provide sufficient financial gains at farm level. A plot level financial cost-benefit analysis was undertaken to examine under which social and economic conditions bench terraces are financially viable in Northern and Southern Rwanda. Farmers' estimates of respective costs and potato yields from plots with subsidized and un-subsidized bench terraces, progressive terraces and plots with no terraces at all were obtained for the analysis. Costs of labour and manure were found to be the most influential for the profitability of bench and progressive terraces. While the cost-benefit analysis, using market prices, showed that bench terraces would be hardly profitable, an analysis with opportunity costs for labour and manure indicated that bench terraces and even more progressive terraces can be financially profitable. Extra measures and incentives may be required to facilitate use of labour and access to manure, as now achieved with the one cow per family policy. This paper suggests that further studies should be undertaken to determine costs and benefits of bench terraces beyond private perspective in Rwanda. © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.


Seburanga J.L.,National University of Rwanda | Zhang Q.,Beijing Forestry University
Journal of Forestry Research | Year: 2013

Trees play a key role in neighborhood landscapes, a belief that has been widely held for millennia in areas beyond Sub-Saharan Africa. Unfortunately, awareness of modern landscape architecture was almost absent in Rwanda until the late 20th century. Today, houses with surrounding decorative and amenity plants are a common feature in Rwanda's neighborhood landscapes and, as the villagization of settlements progresses, new kinds of landscapes are emerging. This paper explores neighborhood tree planting around human settlements in the country. Remote sensing, photogrammetry, photo interpretation, and plant surveys were the core methods used. The average tree cover fraction ranged between 10%-35%. As the result of what is hereafter referred to as the "luxury effect," a discrete gradient was detected along which the diversity of ornamental and amenity trees increases with the socio-economic status of neighborhoods: from rural settlements to urban residences via a series of intermediate designs, in which different levels of human-built vegetated areas alternate with non-landscaped spaces. Showy, non-productive amenity trees tend to occur more in wealthy quarters of the inner core of cities while edible ornamentals and other productive neighborhood trees prevail in rural and spontaneous settlements. In general, the practice of landscape plant design, in spite of its constant improvement, is still striving to get established as a profession in the country. © 2013 Northeast Forestry University and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.


Gahutu J.B.,National University of Rwanda
American Journal of Physiology - Advances in Physiology Education | Year: 2010

In the present article, I report on my experience in teaching and learning physiology in the first year of a new modular curriculum at the Faculty of Medicine of the National University of Rwanda. With self-reported questionnaires, I collected learning experience perceptions from 112 students who attended the module of physiology in 2008. The results showed satisfaction with active learning methods but complaints about the limited contact hours allocated to classroom lectures and practical classes. Student-centered learning was handicapped by the limited computer and internet access for students and by the limited number of textbooks in the library. In conclusion, the new teaching and learning style was appreciated by the students, but problems related to limited human and material resources need to be solved. Copyright © 2010 The American Physiological Society.

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