The Ministry of Health and the University of Rwanda have started thirteen (13) medical courses that are expected to expand workforce development in the health sector while also boosting medical service delivery in the country.
The development was announced during the launch of 13 medical courses at the Kigali Convention Center on May 4.
They include Adult and Pediatric Cardiology course that trains heart doctors who work with children and adults, and courses that study functions and diseases of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon and rectum, pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts, and liver, or Gastroenterology.
Other courses are Hepatology which incorporate the study of the liver, gallbladder, biliary tree, and pancreas as well as management of their disorder, and Gynecology Oncology, a specialized field of medicine that focuses on cancers of the female reproductive system, including ovarian cancer, uterine cancer, vaginal cancer, cervical cancer, and vulvar cancer.
There is also Nephrology, Adult Internal Medicine, and Pediatric Medicine which includes the study of the kidneys, specifically normal kidney function and kidney disease, the preservation of kidney health, and the treatment of kidney disease, from diet and medication to renal replacement therapy.
In Endocrinology, students cover a branch of Biology and Medicine dealing with the endocrine system, its diseases, and its specific secretions known as hormones.
The Maternal-fetal Medicine, also known as Perinatology which focuses on managing the health concerns of the mother and fetus prior to, during, and shortly after pregnancy.
Others include Pediatric Surgery, Neurology, Plastic surgery, Dermatology, Master of Science in Clinical Anatomy, and Doctor of Philosophy in Clinical Anatomy.
According to the Ministry of Health, all the courses have been accepted by the higher education regulating body−Higher Education Council (HEC).
“The government will do everything possible, work closely with partners to make sure that doctors and health workers’ working environment are improved. The good collaboration with government teaching hospitals and medical schools is guaranteed,” Dr. Daneil Ngamije, Minister of Health said.
“This is a good time to celebrate the collaboration of the hospitals including; the Kanombe Military hospital, King Faisal, and University teaching hospitals for simplifying medical services in the country.”
Students will be enrolled at the Bachelor’s level, Masters and PhDs.
According to the Ministry of Health, all the medical courses fit into the National Strategy for Health Professions Development 2020-2030.
The later intends to build on analysis to determine the required staffing levels and the corresponding training targets for prioritized training programs.
Dr. Valentine Uwamariya, Minister of Education said that the students to be enrolled in these medical programs are expected to bring positive change once employed, for people seeking medical services across the country.
“The target is improving medical services; students to be enrolled will study, graduate to positively impact health sector,” she said.
Officials did not reveal the number of students to be admitted for the first intake but confirmed that the admissions will start in 2024.
To teach these courses, several partners have joined hands including; the University of Rwanda (UR), Ministry of Health, HEC, Ministry of Education, and Buffett Foundation, a charitable organization that targets to create transformational change to improve the standard of living and quality of life for the world’s most impoverished and marginalized populations.
According to the Ministry of Health, the University of Rwanda has initiated the designing of the syllabi for medical courses.