The Association of Medical Regulatory Authorities in Africa (AMCOA) has launched their strategic planning workshop program that is aimed at training medics and providing participants with an opportunity to engage in regulatory matters pertaining to the healthcare environment.
The focus is on key areas such as education and training, registration and licensing, continuing professional development, professional conduct, complaints handling as well as the regulator’s duty to ensure safe and appropriate work environments.
The goal of AMCOA is to equip regulators with skills in core governance, operational functions and strategic planning as regulators.
Speaking at the forum Thursday, Director of Public Health Dr. Francis Kuria said that Health care systems are complex and patient safety requires robust and effective regulation, the individual doctors to be fit to practice, teams to operate effectively, and the health care system to provide the necessary resources and infrastructure.
“Fundamentally, the shared goal of health professional regulatory councils is to protect the patients by employing effective regulatory tools to manage risks and ensure that doctors are fit to practice and contribute to the provision of high-quality health care,” stated Kuria.
He added that the regulatory systems for medical and dental practitioners are an essential part of well-functioning health systems towards achieving Universal Health and the Sustainable Development Goals.
Kuria noted that any regulatory system, regardless of its size or context, should be guided by a series of basic tenets, including independence, equity, transparency, ethical conduct, accountability and regulatory science as well as having a number of cross-cutting elements adapted to their specific context, such as financing, human resources and information systems.
He lauded the counterparts from the Southern, Eastern and Western African Blocks for the great initiative and their leading roles in driving AMCOA to become a global force in medical regulation.
He further acknowledged that it remains the Council’s aspiration that other member countries’ Boards and Councils (East and Central African sub region) would soon gradually take up membership in AMCOA to make it even stronger and better.
Kuria urged the delegates to put their hearts, minds and souls into even their smallest acts as regulators which would consequently be the secret recipe for success.
“Kenya and East Africa through AMCOA’s initial proposal of recognition where medical and dental practitioners are able to work within the member states has been approved,” declared the CEO Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Council (KMPDC) David Kariuki.
Kariuki disclosed that Presidents of the member states recommended the formation of a joint inspection team to be able to go through the medical and dental schools in Africa, to standardize their curriculums and certify graduates from the various East African countries so that they are able to freely work across the region.