Improving Recruitment of surgical trainees and Training of Surgeons in Uganda|
M. Galukande, S. Luboga, S.C. Kijjambu
The surgical work output in Uganda is qualitatively and quantitatively inadequate. The number of surgeons is estimated at 100 for a population of over 26 million Ugandans. This paper reports on how to improve recruitment of surgical trainees and training of surgeons in Uganda, focusing on perceptions of potential trainees, trainers, and medical administrators.
This was cross sectional, descriptive study sampled at least 50% of each of the relevant category of interviewees. Self-administered questionnaire and focus group discussions were used to collect data, which was analyzed manually using a master sheet. It was approved by the Ethics and Research Committee.
Paediatrics and Public Health were rated as the disciplines of choice for postgraduate training in Uganda. The reasons why potential trainees would shy away from specialized surgical training were excessive workload, risk of catching HIV/AIDS, low financial returns and a poor learning environment. The major bottlenecks in surgical training, which were cited, included inadequate number of scholarships, inadequate supervision by trainers, inadequate facilities and poor work conditions for trainers.
The remedies to this complex problem revolve round providing more resources, (human, materials, money), improving supervision by the trainers, advocacy for an evidence based curriculum content and availing more funding into the Medical Education sector to improve Human Resource for Health development.