B a c k g r o u n d :
Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in healthcare has traditionally been regarded as the way in which healthcare workers continue to learn and develop throughout their careers so that they build both their skills and knowledge up to date in order to practice safely and effectively. This was not mandatory and neither was it enforced or regulated and mainly depended on one’s need and interest to keep updated. As national borders continue to disappear as far as health provision and education are concerned against a rapidly advancing technological and digital world, changing societal needs, this lends credence to the idea that healthcare workers require CPD in order to ensure the delivery of safe, quality services in a more relevant and regulated fashion.
Doctors are very crucial in the healthcare system and are often taken by competing activities like training other medical carders, long patient lines and chronic fatigue thus undermining the effort in establishing a sustained high-quality CPD culture in resource-limited settings (RLS). Nonetheless developing a culture of continuous professional education is the cornerstone of revolutionalising and improving healthcare delivery, enhancing accountability and regulation strengthening. This should be prioritised as a low-cost intervention model to improve health service delivery. A fundamental component for CPD that needs to be in place is ensuring that a doctor must poses a recognized certificate of being registered according to the law of the land.
In addition, CPD conducted by the Uganda Medical Association (U.M.A.) must ensure relevance and timeliness of updated information is provided to address the current trends in health is of paramount importance. U.M.A has five focus areas, which are to contribute to universal access to health and health care, promote professional ethical standards among medical doctors in Uganda, promote the welfare of medical doctors in Uganda, to mobilize doctors to join and encourage them to actively participate in the association’s activities and to strengthen the financial base of the association.
In order to work towards achieving the 5 focus areas, there is a need for doctors to routinely meet and be involved in CPD activities as a platform for enhancing change. We will therefore define CPD beyond educational activities to enhance medical competence in medical knowledge and skills, but also in management, team building, professionalism, interpersonal communication, technology, teaching, and accountability. In Uganda doctor are mandated to get registered/licensed annually according to the Uganda Medical and Dental Practitioners Council (UMDPC) Act 1998. As of 2019 531 practitioners were registered at the Council from July 2018 to June 2019. While those who are updated members in February 2020 under U.M.A. are 55 out of previously registered 1812 yet it is estimated that there are nearly 7000 doctors working in Uganda. Do the maths!!!!