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Update From the Dean of Postgraduate Studies and Research

College of Medicine


Dr Adamson Muula

From the Dean of Postgraduate Studies and Research

Greetings. I am writing to you all to present an update on several key activities at the College and also highlight the outlook for the next months in the Postgraduate Office.

 Medical Internships for Medical Doctors

As you may know, the Dean’s Office coordinates, in liaison with the Ministry of Health, the

Internship Programme for medical doctors. From December 2012, the Medical Council of

Malawi decided that the 18 months internship programme for medical doctors will comprise: 5 months each or Surgery and Obstetrics and Gynaecology and four months each of Medicine and Pediatrics and Child Health. The most notable change is that the two months District Health Management Attachment will not be required for registration as a medical doctor in Malawi. It is important to note that the length of the internship has not changed and that all intern doctors who were interns before the decision was made by Council will complete the two months district attachment for them to be fully registered as doctors.

 Ongoing Specialist Training Programmes for Medical Doctors

Our specialist training programmes are generally progressing well. We have the Master of

Medicine (MMED) programmes in General Surgery, Orthopaedics, Paediatrics and Child Health, Anesthesia, Internal Medicine and Ophthalmology. The MMED programmes in General Surgery, Orthopaedics and Ophthalmology are completed will the full training offered in country (may be except for Ophthalmology whose trainees still to Germany for an elective period). The programmes in Internal Medicine, Paediatrics and Child Health and Anesthesia are offered in Malawi but also including a period of between 12-18 months spent in South Africa often at the University of Witwatersrand and University of Cape Town.

 Upcoming Specialist Training Programmes for Medical Doctors

The University of Malawi Senate and the Medical Council of Malawi had, several years ago, approved an MMED Curriculum of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (specialist training in Obstetrics and Gynaecology).

Although the College was preparing trainees to sit for Part 1 examinations for the relevant specialist college of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists in South Africa, we did not implement our own programme. The experience of preparing trainees for South Africa, and 2 changing human resources’ environment in-country and mobilization of other resources has necessitated that the College here starts the MMED Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the University of Malawi.

I am pleased to report that Senate of the University Of Malawi has approved curricula for MMED in Accidents and Emergency as well as Renal Medicine. The structure of the programmes will be such that we will continue to have trainees rotate in South Africa for periods of between 12 and 18 months. As our health system continues to improve, the training periods abroad will be reduced accordingly. Our trainees and faculty continue to suggest that the period spent in South Africa is valuable.

The College is in the process of finalizing an MMED Curriculum in Family Medicine. Works on the curriculum has straddled the Departments of Medicine and Community Health. It is planned that approval of this curriculum will be attained before the end of the year. The support of ITECH (United States Private Org) is recognized.

You may want to know that several years ago, both the University of Malawi Senate and the Medical Council of Malawi approved a curriculum for an MMED in Public Health. Interest in this programme continues.

The Department of Community Health in the Faculty of Medicine is working to create two new masters programmes: Master of Science in Epidemiology and Master of Science in

Occupational Health and Safety. While the Epidemiology curriculum is in its early stages, a draft curriculum in Occupational Health and Safety is at advanced stage.

Milestone in Anesthesia Specialist Training

The University has approved the examinations results of Part 2 MMED in Anesthesia. This means that the College has made history this year for having the first ever MMED specialist in Anesthesia (Dr Felix Namboya) to be trained in the country. Other trainees are following his footsteps with another MMED Part 2 schedule later in the year.


Advertisement for Specialist Training Programme, MPhil/PhD and the Master of Public Health

An advert to recruit new students in the MMED programmes and Master of Public Health (MPH) programmes is coming out in the newspapers and on the College website soon. There are scholarships/sponsorships in General Surgery and Obstetrics and Gynaecology. The MPH programme continues to be a well-sought after programme.

Senate of the University of Malawi has approved the regulations for MPhil Programmes (by research only) at the College of Medicine. This means that from now on, the CoM can enroll students for a diverse list of MPhil specializations. This is a vote of confidence to faculty and the College that it can expand its repertoire of graduate programmes.


Modification of the MPH Programme Regulations

Senate has approved the modification of the MPH programme regulations in that students on the MPH programme can graduate with a Postgraduate Diploma in Public Health if they meet the requirements for coursework but do not proceed to do the dissertation or thesis. Such students may be admitted back to complete their MPH after one year has passed from the award of their Postgraduate Diploma.


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Call for applications for postgraduate programmes at the college of medicine

A. Masters in Medicine (MMed) Programs
College of Medicine (CoM) is inviting applications from suitably qualified candidates to pursue the following 4 year speciality training programs:
1. Master in Medicine in General Surgery
2. Master in Medicine in Internal Medicine
3. Master in Medicine in Ophthalmology
4. Master in Medicine in Orthopaedics
5. Master in Medicine in Paediatrics and Child Health
6. Master in Medicine in Anaesthesia
7. Master in Medicine in Psychiatry
The MMed programs start in March and September each year. The College receives applications all year round however will only consider those received by 30th November and 31st May for March and September intakes respectively. [However for March 2013 intake only, applications received until 18th January 2013 will be considered]

Admission Requirements
1. Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) or its equivalent from any recognized university
2. Be registered with the Malawi Medical Council as a Medical Practitioner

MMed Ophthalmology: There are three (3) scholarships which cover tuition and upkeep allowance for intake of March 2013. These include the Professor Moses Chirambo Memorial, Sight Savers and Ministry of Health scholarships. Candidates are requested in their cover letter to indicate if they would like to be considered for a scholarship.

B. Master in Public Health (MPH) Program
College of Medicine is inviting applications from suitably qualified candidates to pursue a 2-year block-release Master in Public Health program.Those admitted into the MPH program may choose to specialise in Health management, Bioethics, Epidemiology or Health Informatics. The College receives applications all year round however will only consider those received by 31st May for the September intake.

Admission Requirements
1. Bachelor’s degree in a relevant subject from any recognized university
2. At least two years of work experience in a relevant field is essential
3. Research experience or scientific publications are desirable
4. Candidates interested in health informatics should have experience in information technology and have to indicate this area of interest on the application form

C. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Program
College of Medicine is inviting applications from suitably qualified candidates to pursue Master of Philosophy (MPhil) degree and/or Doctor of Philosophy degree (PhD) programs. These are postgraduate degree programs by research (2 years for MPhil; 4 years for PhD). Candidates may apply to be considered for a) the CoM PhD degree program or b) the Joint College of Medicine-University of Liverpool PhD degree programs.

Admission Requirements
1. Masters degree in a relevant subject from any recognized university or;
2. A medical degree or its equivalent, or appropriate Honours degree in the First or Upper Second Division in a relevant discipline
The College receives applications all year round. Interested candidates are strongly advised to have preliminary discussions with the PhD Coordinator or the respective Head of Department where the training would be take place before submitting an application.

D. Applications for all programs should include:
1. A completed postgraduate application form available at www.medcol.mwor CoM Registry
2. Sealed academic transcripts
3. Authenticated copies of academic certificates
4. Authenticated copies of professional registration certificates where applicable
5. Letter of release from employers (if employed)
6. Proof of funding (e.g. sponsorship agreement letter). Where applicants intend to sponsor themselves, copies of appropriate financial records must be submitted e.g. bank reference
7. Reference letters (one academic and one professional)
8. A non-refundable application fee of MK3,500 for Malawians and US $300 for non-Malawians

Download the application form

Completed application should be sent to:
The Registrar
Attention: Assistant Registrar (Academic)
College of Medicine
Private Bag 360
Blantyre 3
Tel: + 265 (0) 1 874 107, Fax +265 (0) 1 874 700