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Experts Believe Building Local Healthcare Manpower Capacity in East Africa More Sustainable in the Long Run

East African healthcare authorities should invest more in their home grown talent to prevent brain drain.

Nairobi, Kenya, September 04, 2014 --(PR.com)-- As medical expertise is becoming more expensive to import, more countries are growing keen on medical tourism. The East African healthcare market needs to develop competence and increase professional capacity by investing more in local talent. This will encourage and grow the confidence of the population in their own doctors.

According to Dr Ian Clarke, Chairman and CEO of International Medical Group, Kampala, Uganda, “This is not just a matter of paying our own home grown professionals well, though remuneration is a factor, but we must also build the health sector capacity in terms of facilities and equipment.”

Dr Clarke will speak at the Healthcare Management Conference at the 2nd Medic East Africa Exhibition & Congress organised by Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions. Exclusively supported by Kenya Medical Association, Kenya Association of Physicians and East African Healthcare Federation, the event will be held at the Visa Oshwal Convention Centre in Nairobi from 23 -25 September 2014.

“A doctor may train as a cardiologist and be facilitated in his home country with the necessary equipment (which in this case is not very complex or expensive). However, if that person goes abroad and trains as an interventional cardiologist, he will then need a complete cardiac catheterization unit in his home country, if he is to practice what he has been trained for. Additionally, he will need to work with experienced interventional cardiologists until he gains sufficient experience and seniority,” highlighted Dr Clarke.

Ugandan doctors are well trained and can match doctors anywhere in the world, as is evidenced by how many Ugandan doctors are practicing in other parts of the world. But unless the Ugandan government invests more in their doctors, and takes them more seriously, there will be a continuing brain drain.

“There is still a negative attitude towards the developing private sector by senior specialists and high level civil servants in the Ministry of Health and the government referral hospitals. Until the government develops some real public-private partnerships (PPPs) in the health sector, high level professional services in Uganda will struggle. Especially, since the government public sector is inefficient and doctors have become de-motivated,” commented Dr Clarke.
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