Breaking: Ministry of Health issues press statement concerning issues raised by medical interns

The objective of internship is to allow medical interns undergo a supervised training to turn theoretical knowledge into practical clinical skills, the statement reads in part.

The Ministry of Health has issued a press release responding to a number of issues raised by medical interns pertaining their internship.

The statement answers a number of issues including salaries and other things.

On salaries, the statement says medical interns are not civil servants because they have not been recruited through the formal recruitment system and therefore can not earn a salary.

The statement says Ministry of Health (MoH) pays them allowances to facilitate their apprenticeship.

The statement goes on to say the current allowance is what is available to MoH medium expenditure frame work taking into consideration the very high number of medical interns this year- 1170.

The statement also addresses the issue of rotation across disciplines as another issue of concern for medical interns.

Interns have been complaining about the revised rotation system between the different disciplines from 3 months in each discipline to 6 months in two disciplines.

According to the statement, previously from the onset of training medical doctors and internship in Uganda, the rotation for medical interns used to be six months in one surgical discipline and six months in one medical discipline – for the one year of internship.

The statement goes on to say that in 2009, this was temporarily changed to three monthly rotation in each of the four disciplines as a trial with the assumption that obtaining skills in all the disciplines would enable medical doctors to be able to work in Health Center IVs comfortably and with confidence.

According to the document, this has not been the case. Many of the doctors deployed in health facilities still require a lot of in service training to develop confidence.

In this respect, the intern supervisors (senior consultants and professors and lecturers from the training universities) who found a lot of gaps with the three month rotation advised the Regulatory Councils and MoH that this short period of rotation does not give interns enough exposure to learn the practical skills in each of the four disciplines.

Below is the full statement:

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