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Medical Interns Oppose Change in Internship Rotation Program

Samuel Kigula, the President of the Intern Doctors, says that since interns do a lot of work in health facilities due to shortage of health workers, the move exposes patients to risk of being treated by individuals who don’t have necessary skills since students will not get sufficient exposure to different cases at health facilities.

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The Federation of Medical Interns has criticized a move by the Health Ministry to change the training program from focusing on practical lessons in the four specialties of Surgery, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynecology to only two programs.  

Samuel Kigula, the President of the Intern Doctors, says that since interns do a lot of work in health facilities due to shortage of health workers, the move exposes patients to risk of being treated by individuals who don’t have necessary skills since students will not get sufficient exposure to different cases at health facilities.

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He says that even students doing pharmacy are facing similar challenges.

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According to Kigula, early this year, they tried to negotiate with the Health Ministry to reverse the decision and failed prompting them to secure a court injunction.

He however, says the ministry has ignored the injunction and instead deployed student leaders opposed to the development to upcountry hospitals.

Kigula says as a result, they have resolved not to report to their placements until the Health Ministry resorts to the old rotation program and also commit to pay them their stipulated salary of Shillings 3million gross.

Currently, they get a net pay of Shillings 700,000.  

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According to the Health Ministry, the directive to have interns train in two major specialties was aimed at making them spend a lot of time understanding a specific field, which will handle patients better than having a little bit of everything without giving ample time to each.

Internship is supposed to commence on October 01, 2019.

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