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New Year. New Beginning?

by Helen Fosam

Like the start of every year, a new beginning is when many of us want to sweep out the old and bring in the new. A time we create new goals to reach higher targets. We cover up our disappointments of the prior year or years with New Year’s resolutions.

But do we have to? 

Do we need to sweep out the old and create new goals to reach higher targets?

Why can’t our New Year’s resolution be a moment to reflect on our journey and see how we can progress from where we left off from the prior year? Is it time for a strategy to complete unfinished tasks or at least push them forward a notch toward our ultimate goal? 

  • What went well and deserved to be continued? 
  • What did not work and should be discontinued or tweaked? 
  • And what was missing and needs to be introduced? 

After all, we are all on a journey; we need past experiences to help us move forward. So, let’s not be swept up by the newness of the New Year. Let’s not automatically sweep out the old to create a new start, especially if we still need to finish what we started. 

With these reflections, I revisited the survey of healthcare professionals the MiLHO Initiative conducted in 2022 to understand better the CME/CPD needs of healthcare professionals in Africa. An incredible 73 of you from 18 countries responded, 15 of the countries in Africa! Thank you all so much. 

The MiLHO Initiative is my journey, and the survey results provide valuable insights for the road on which my team and I will travel in 2023. The results showed what we got right, revealed new things we learned, and provided a warning on what we did not get right and need to change. Here’s a snapshot of how reflecting on the journey in 2022 will guide the road in 2023:

The survey results validated our use of an online platform for the courses we curate in that 77% of you said online is your source for updating your knowledge or participating in CME/CPD. So, we will continue the same in 2023!  

We are encouraged by the majority, 84% of you, who said mobile phones are your device to access CME/CPD online. When developing the online courses, we ensured that content was mobile-friendly so that healthcare professionals could access information wherever they were, including at the point of care.

We learned something new — that YouTube is the social media platform of choice to search for medically-related content, chosen by 73% of you! Guess what? This is valuable information as we plan new courses in 2023, a revelation from what we did in 2022, not from a New Year resolution. 

We did get a red flag from one of our survey results. It requires a rethink and a direction change in 2023! Almost 50% of you told us that $5 is more affordable for our online courses than the $20 we thought. Because MiLHO Initiative’s primary goal is accessibility and affordability, we have immediately revised the price of our course to $5! Check out the courses here:

Contact the MiLHO Initiative if you want to see the full survey results.