Post Graduate Training Program in Family and Emergency Medicine was today launched together with a symposium on Health Professionals Training at Kisumu Hotel of Maseno University. This was a result of a multi partner venture where Maseno School of Medicine has entered a collaboration with Sagam Community Hospital, Massachussets General Hospital (MGH) of Harvard University and IntraHealth International’s FUNZOKenya Project in order to develop and run pre-service, in-service and postgraduate training program for healthcare professionals. Maseno University is the first University to offer Family and Emergency as one programme . This innovative training opportunity is offered at the School of Medicine and is designed to equip physicians with the experience , skills and knowledge to be able to navigate and manage a vast array of patient-care needs, including acute injury and critical care, in the context of family and community. Family Medicine is a division of primary care that provides continuing and comprehensive health care for the individual and family across all ages, genders, diseases, and parts of the body. The aim of Family Medicine is to provide personal, comprehensive and continuing care for the individual in the context of the family and the community. It emphasizes clinical care disease prevention and health promotion. Emergency Medicine is a field of practice on the knowledge and skills required for the prevention, diagnosis and management of acute and urgent aspects of illness and injury affecting patients of all age groups. The vital role that emergency medicine providers play in the health care of a country has been recognized, prompting a growing interest in Emergency Medicine all over the world. However, infrastructure is often inadequate. Even in other areas with significant financial and medical resources, training in emergency medicine is limited. The symposium provided a critical and interactive knowledge- sharing platform for reviewing the health professionals training programme.
Key objectives of the symposium were
- Introduce and create awareness on the Family and Emergency Medicine program at Maseno University.
- Advocate for support and sponsorship for the programme.
- Highlight the importance of and opportunities for Continuing Health Professional Training.
- Strengthen collaboration and partnerships in training and healthcare delivery with the County Governments in Western Kenya.
The symposium was graced by some of the best Medical Professors in the country led by the Governor of Kericho H.E Prof Paul Kiprono Chepkwony who is also an Associate Professor of Organic Chemistry at Moi University. Prof Chepkwony has also previously taught in Jomo Kenyatta University of Technology. He gave a powerful keynote address which left the participant yearning for more and he was very impressed to be among his colleagues in academia. The climax of his address is when he announced a scholarship for one student from Kericho County for the post graduate programme and urged his fellow Governors to support the Family and Emergency Medicine programme. He was accompanied by his County Executive Member for Health.
Prof Khama Rogo and Dr Walter Obita also made presentation for Sagam Hospital. Prof Rogo made a very powerful presentation in the status of health system now and over thirty years ago. He was very categorical that healthcare workers must change their attitude so as they provide the care which the patients so much need. He also explained the need for training in Family and Emergency Medicine, pointing out that domestic accidents are very rampant and they cause more deaths as compared to other causes because nobody takes them seriously. He also vouched for devolution of health care to the counties and said that it has to be supported because it has brought accountability. He also observed that those who are against it are the ones who fears supervision and want to have their own free time. He acknowledged that the current problems being faced in the counties are just teething problems which will be overcomed with . He also requested health care workers to stewards of the resources they have and avoid unnecessary wastages. Dr Walter Obita also announced one scholarship for one student who will be joining the programme.
Dr Vikram Palanivel made a presentation on Massachusetts General and their collaboration with Sagam Hospital and Maseno and said that the partnership will be strengthened in the coming years. The was also a presentation from County Government of Busia by Assumpta Matekwa on behalf of Hon Dr Maurice Simiyu who is the Executive Member for Health Services for Busia. From her presentation there was serious shortages of human resources in all cadres and this has even made the County Director of Health to practice as Public Health Specialist. They also refer their patients for emergency care all the way to Jaramogi Teaching and Referral which is over 200 kms away. Masinde Muliro University also did a presentation led by Dr Gladys Mengich and this was more on what they have done with FUNZOKenya in areas of health strengthening system. FUNZOKenya was also ably represented by Prof Stephen Okeyo, Allan Oginga, Peter Millo who is the Deputy Chief of Party.