Dialogue will continue between the provincial government and UJ to ensure that the medical school is established. The province plans to build six new hospitals during this decade. Prof Sehaam Khan, the Executive Dean of UJ’s Faculty of Health Sciences, said the visit gave UJ the chance to state its case for increasing the number of student physicians training regionally. “By strengthening medical education in Gauteng and bringing a medical school to UJ, we will open many doors for future health care professionals and also play a nationally leading role in research,” she said.
A day earlier, during his State of the Province Address, Gauteng Premier David Makhura reaffirmed that his administration wants to work closely with UJ to fast-track the building of a medical school. He also committed to support the University in expanding the capacity to train more doctors and other health professionals. This comes against the backdrop of growing concerns about the shortage of doctors in South Africa. And given the envisioned re-engineering of primary health care in South Africa, the National Health Insurance (NHI) will require far greater numbers of clinical and non-clinical professionals with different skills and competencies.
The University of Johannesburg’s plan to establish a medical school, which will in turn contribute significantly towards the medical sector in the Gauteng province in the future, was given a strong push forward by provincial government earlier this year. On 26 February, the MEC of Health, Dr Bandile Masuku, visited UJ’s Faculty of Health Sciences, including the recently established, high-tech Medical Simulation Lab that simulates real-time medical emergency situations, which he was visibly impressed by. He also took special interest in the numerous health courses offered in various departments within the faculty.
UJ’s medical school starts its journey to fruition
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