Report

Strengthening primary health care through primary care doctors: the design of a new national Postgraduate Diploma in Family Medicine

Published in: South African Family Practice
Volume 58, issue 1, 2016 , pages: 32–36
DOI: 10.1080/20786190.2015.1083719
Author(s): R MashDivision of Family Medicine and Primary Care, Republic of South Africa, Z MalanDivision of Family Medicine and Primary Care, Republic of South Africa, K von PressentinDivision of Family Medicine and Primary Care, Republic of South Africa, J BlitzDivision of Family Medicine and Primary Care, Republic of South Africa

Abstract

Strengthening primary health care is a national priority in South Africa, in order to improve quality of care and health outcomes, reduce inequity and to pave the way for National Health Insurance. The World Health Organization and World Health Assembly both recommend the inclusion of a primary care doctor with postgraduate training in Family Medicine in the primary healthcare team. Currently, medical practitioners without postgraduate training, and those who may need re-orientating and upskilling for the future re-engineered primary care system, are the largest pool of doctors in South Africa. Most of these doctors are of an age and at a stage in their careers where it is unlikely that they will train to be a family physician.

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