oa African Journal of Health Professions Education - A reflection on professional development of registrars completing a module in Health Care Practice : research

Volume 5, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5127



A need for professional development in the training of registrars was identified by the School of Medicine, University of the Free State (UFS), Bloemfontein, South Africa, in 2007.

To develop the module on Health Care Practice (HCP) (GPV703) to address these shortcomings.
A quantitative study, enhanced by qualitative data, was conducted. A self-administered questionnaire that included a rating scale and open-ended questions was used. The quantitative responses were analysed using Microsoft Excel, and the qualitative data were edited, categorised and summarised.
The questionnaire was completed by 95% (=38/40) of registrars. The quantitative questions, regarding the orientation session, content and applicability of the content of the module, showed satisfactory to very good responses. Of the 40 surveys collected from registrars, 77.5% (=31/40) were completed by heads of department (HODs). The surveys showed a significant improvement in registrar competence: 17 were given an above-average rating and 14 an average rating; there were no below-average ratings.
The module on HCP, which is part of the MMed programme, addressed aspects required by registrars to develop and/or enhance their skills, knowledge and professional behaviour with regard to ethics, practice management and patient communication. Registrars were generally satisfied with the content and presentation of the module. The open-ended questions raised concerns about aspects of patient communication and electronic learning. These need to be addressed to improve the quality of the module.
The module on HCP (GPV703), as implemented by the UFS, is successful in addressing key aspects often neglected because of the strong clinical focus of a medical programme.

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