n South African Medical Journal - Can a new paediatric sub-specialty improve child health in South Africa? : forum - issues in child health
|Article Title||Can a new paediatric sub-specialty improve child health in South Africa? : forum - issues in child health|
|© Publisher:||Health and Medical Publishing Group (HMPG)|
|Journal||South African Medical Journal|
|Affiliations||1 University of Cape Town, 2 University of Cape Town, 3 University of Cape Town, 4 University of the Western Cape, 5 Pietermaritzburg Metropolitan Hospital Complex and 6 University of the Witwatersrand|
|Publication Date||Sep 2012|
|Pages||738 - 739|
Compared with other middle-income countries, child health in South Africa is in a poor state, and should be addressed by focusing on the healthcare needs of all children across a system or region. Paediatricians have had little effect on this situation, partly because their training is not aligned with South African needs. The proposed re-engineering of primary healthcare will be limited by the skewed distribution of staff and the lack of suitable skills. A 'community' placement during specialist training, and the creation of a sub-specialty in Community Paediatrics and Child Health, could address the skills shortage and possibly attract health personnel to under-served areas through creating an appropriate career path. This proposal would also support the Department of Health's encouraging plans to re-engineer primary healthcare.
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