Short Report - Special Collection: Innovative educational methods for FM training in Africa

Don’t wait for the perfect moment: The national training program in family medicine in Angola

Israel C. Avelino, Kama Sandra M. Chimuco, Niurka T. Díaz, Adelson G. Jantsch
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 16, No 1 | a4458 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v16i1.4458 | © 2024 Israel Cussumua Avelino, Kama Sandra Matondo Chimuco, Niurka Taureaux Díaz, Adelson Guaraci Jantsch | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 05 January 2024 | Published: 08 April 2024

About the author(s)

Israel C. Avelino, College of General and Family Medicine, Order of Doctors of Angola, Angolan Medical Council, Luanda, Angola
Kama Sandra M. Chimuco, Hospital Municipal Olga Chaves, Lubango, Angola
Niurka T. Díaz, Huila Provincial Health Office, Lubango, Angola
Adelson G. Jantsch, Universidade Aberta do SUS, Brasília, Brazil

Abstract

Like many Sub-Saharan countries, Angola struggles with a shortage of trained health professionals, especially for primary care. In 2021, the Angolan Ministry of Health in collaboration with the Angolan Medical Council launched the National Program for the Expansion of Family Medicine as a long-term strategy for the provision, fixation and training of family physicians in community health centres. Of the 425 residents 411 (96.7%) who entered the programme in 2021 will get their diplomas in the following months and will be certified as family physicians. Three main aspects make this National Programme unique in the Angolan context: (1) the common effort and engagement of the Ministry of Health with the Angolan Medical Council and local health authorities in designing and implementing this programme; (2) decentralisation of the training sites, with residents in all 18 provinces, including in rural areas and (3) using community health centres as the main site of practice and training. Despite this undeniable success, many educational improvements must be made, such as expanding the use of new educational resources, methodologies and assessment tools, so that aspects related to knowledge, practical skills and professional attitudes can be better assessed. Moreover, the programme must invest in faculty development courses aiming to create the next generation of preceptors, so that all residents can have in every rotation one preceptor or tutor responsible for the supervision of their clinical activities, case discussions and sharing their clinical duties, both at community health centres and municipal hospitals.


Keywords

Angola; primary health care; family practice; healthcare workforce; Sub-Saharan Africa

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 4: Quality education

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