Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Botswana uncovers deficiencies in China’s medical training

A Botswana Health Professional Council (BHPC) report passed to the Sunday Standard falls short of downgrading the Chinese’s system of training medical doctors and dentists.┬á

BHPC which was established by an Act of Parliament is responsible for the regulation of health professionals in Botswana, sent a delegation to the People’s Republic of China in September last year.

According to the report, the BHPC delegation having extensively interrogated the Chinese system of training recommended that Postgraduate medical and dental training of foreigners (Batswana trainees included) in China does not meet standard postgraduate standards.

“Acceptable postgraduate training requires that the trainee be registered as a medical or dental practitioner in the country they train so that they can have graded responsibility and undertake all procedures expected of the their speciality of patients under their care,” states the report.

The report also recommended that further foreign graduates from China shall need further practical residency training and be subjected to a licensure examination by the BHPC or institution approved by the BHPC which they must pass prior to being registered to work in Botswana.  The duration of further practical residency training will be determined by the BHPC on a case by case basis in conjunction with collaborating with other institutions in South Africa and elsewhere; and will take into consideration the content of the training that would have been provided to China.

The BHPC will also continue registering members of the Chinese medical team to work in Botswana provided they are at a minimum level of “attending doctor” or specialists in China.

“Those members of the Chinese medical team who graduated from Traditional Chinese (TCM) programs should only be registered by the BHPC provided they come to work as acupuncturist in Botswana,” says the report. The report also states that those Batswana who have already been registered with postgraduate qualifications from China should be given a period of time to upgrade their qualifications.

The report says undergraduate medical and dental training is acceptable provided the BHPC reviews the curriculum of the institution prior to the students enrolling in the particular University. This is in view of the fact that some of the universities offer traditional Chinese Medical programs, states the report.

The report says the delegation visited Fujian Provincial Health and Family Development Commission where department of public health Vice Chief Sheng Kui Lin complained about interviews conducted by the Botswana Ministry of Health to screen Chinese volunteers wanting  to come to Botswana noting that these interviews conducted in the English language disadvantaged many volunteers who are not conversant in the language. He called for the abolishing of the interviews saying that their team does enough screening to ensure that those sent to Botswana are properly qualified and ready to serve.

He also raised issues with the BHPC registration process noting that members of Chinese medical team experienced a lot of delays in registration after BHPC questioned many of the documents from China. The BHPC Chairman Dr Gobuamang Tsie informed Shengkui that some of the issues he raised can be answered by Ministry of Health but on the BHPC delays in registration the members of the Chinese medical team, he said it was precisely the reason why the BHPC wanted to visit China so as to understand and appreciate Chinese medical system as well as the  nomenclature in the documents presented to BHPC.


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