New program empowers Timorese health managers

St John of God Social Outreach’s International Health service is empowering nurse managers and other health leaders at the national hospital in Dili through its Health Manager Program (HMP). 

2016 HMP graduates

The program was established to address leadership and management capability among nurse and other leaders at the Hospital Nacional Guido Valadares’ (HNGV) in Dili. 

The HMP provides participants with the knowledge and skills needed to best lead teams, as well as enable them to undertake quality improvement processes to create positive changes in practice across hospital units. 

Director International Health Anthea Ramos said that the program was the first of its kind at the national hospital. 

“This is the first leadership initiative that has been developed specifically for hospital leaders based on site. It incorporates on-the-job projects and importantly includes trainer follow-up, mentoring and tutorial style sessions to ensure maximum output and participation,” she said. 

“Constraints in managing the performance of the health workforce are a serious problem at the HNGV. Most of the local district-level nurse and midwifery managers would struggle to provide adequate supervision without the intervention and support from the capacity building programs initiated by St John of God Social Outreach.” 

The HMP was implemented as a pilot program in 2016 and following its success continued in 2017.  Anthea said the impact of the training was not only benefiting the participants but the ward staff across the hospital units. 

“Ultimately the program aims to improve patient care by empowering managers with the skills and tools they need to best manage their units. We’ve seen first-hand that the HMP has been significant in advancing care at the hospital – it’s becoming part of the service culture,” she said.   

“Several of the 2016 participants have been promoted to supervisory positions to oversee care across the hospital.”

 St John of God Social Outreach caregivers and three Timorese participants are leading this year’s program, with the view of the program being led by Timorese health workers in the future.

The program is supported by the HNGV, National Health Institute (INS) and has received funding from ConocoPhillips.  Geelong consultant, Catherine Gillespie, has been instrumental in assisting SJGHC to develop and deliver the program.  

Did you know? 

  • St John of God Social Outreach has been delivering a Nursing Development Program (NDP) in partnership with the Timor-Leste’s Ministry of Health since 2010. Read more