Research into the education of health professionals requires an understanding of the education that they already receive, and the cultural and societal norms and prejudices that are embedded in this education. Making Health Education appropriate and applicable to the culture and society of the professionals being educated is important in furthering the development of a holistic and representative health system.
As a corollary to this, Health Professionals working in communities need to have knowledge of community identities and social practices in order to assist patients appropriately. There may be cultural practices and norms that health professionals are unaware of, which make treating people a more complex problem than just diagnosis, medication, and advice. DRILL researchers will explore the education they receive, and its application in the community, so as to explore best practices in Health Professions Education, and advise how to improve this within the South African context.
The health professions education scientific track is led by Professor Petra Brysiewicz.
Professor Saul Cobbing is a Physiotherapist and Biokineticist, and currently is an Associate Professor in the Discipline of Physiotherapy, School of Health Sciences, UKZN. His research interests are in the rehabilitation for people living with HIV and disability and Health Education. His experience includes working as a biokineticist and physiotherapist in both South Africa and the United Kingdom.
Dr Diane van Staden is the Academic Leader for Teaching and Learning within the School of Health Sciences. An academic and researcher at UKZN. She has served the profession of optometry for the past 20 years in various capacities and is passionate about the advancement of eye health on the African continent.
Professor Khathutshelo Percy Mashige trained as an Anatomist at the University of Witwatersrand and an Optometrist at the former University of Durban Westville. He is the current Dean and Head of School of Health Sciences at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.
Ms Zandile Shezi is a lecturer in aural rehabilitation in the Discipline of Audiology, UKZN. She is a qualified Audiologist with public sector experience. Ms Shezi’s research interests include aural rehabilitation, early intervention, HIV/AIDS and Audiology, paediatric audiology, electrophysiology and auditory implantable devices.
Professor Rowena Naidoo is an Associate Professor and the academic leader of the Biokinetics, Exercise and Leisure Sciences Department, UKZN. As a registered biokineticist, Prof Naidoo has worked and travelled with various sports teams internationally and locally. Prof Naidoo’s research interests are in physical activity and sport among children with disabilities, workplace wellness, and anti-doping interventions for adolescents.
Ms Hayley Velayudam is a Biokineticist and a lecturer at UKZN. She has a keen interest in research, sports conditioning and orthopedic rehab and injury prevention.