Research dissemination


20th – 21st NOVEMBER, 2015.

The College of Medicine (CoM) is pleased to announce its 19th annual Research Dissemination Conference. The conference will start with the Research Open Day (ROD) on Friday 20th November, 2015 from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm. The ROD will be followed by the Research Dissemination Conference (RDC) on Saturday, 21st November, 2015 from 08:00 am to 5:00 pm. Both events will be held at the College of Medicine Mahatma Gandhi Campus in Blantyre. The theme of the conference is: Addressing the double threat of non-communicable and communicable diseases in Malawi”.

Dr Eliya Zulu -- Executive Director & Founder of African Institute for Development Policy (AFIDEP).Eliya is a leading expert in population issues

Dr Eliya Zulu — Executive Director & Founder of African Institute for Development Policy (AFIDEP).Eliya is a leading expert in population issues


Prof MalcomMolyneux, MD, PhD Former Director& MLW Senior Scientist in Malaria.Malcolm’s work focuses on pathogenesis and treatment of severe disease in children














The Research Open Day will showcase on-going and planned research activities at the College of Medicine and its research affiliates namely; Blantyre Malaria Project (BMP), Johns Hopkins Project (JHP), Malaria Alert Centre (MAC), Malawi Liverpool Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Programme (MLW) and Malawi Epidemiological and Intervention Research Unit (MEIRU). This will be an opportunity for stakeholders and members of the general public to have informal interaction with research scientists on the purpose and relevance of the research activities undertaken. Thereafter, participants will be invited to visit various research pavilions. There will also be an opportunity for participants to tour various laboratories of the College of Medicine and the research affiliates. These will include the Microbiology, Molecular Biology, Clinical Chemistry, Haematology and Histopathology laboratories. A visit to the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Centre has also been planned for participants.


While the Research Open Day is free, participants to the Research Dissemination Conference (RDC) will be required to pay the following fees;


  1. Undergraduate and Postgraduate students: MK7,500.00
  2. University of Malawi Faculty members: MK15,000.00
  3. Other delegates: MK25,000.00


Note: The fees will cover the cost of lunch, refreshments, printing of abstract booklet and other conference-related expenses.


The aim of the RDC is to disseminate emerging research findings to stakeholders in the health sector, researchers and the interested general public and assess the relevance of the findings to health policy formulation, programme implementation and clinical practice. The RDC will bring together research scientists, health practitioners and policy makers from within and outside Malawi. Specifically, participation will be drawn from government; civil society organizations (CSOs), development partners, universities, media, private sector, industries and research institutions. During the RDC, researchers and all the stakeholders will discuss emerging research findings through oral and poster presentations. The presentations will focus on the following areas: Communicable diseases, Health systems, HIV and AIDS; Malaria; Maternal and Child Health; Non-Communicable Diseases and TB. Because CoM is an academic institution, committed to stimulating research culture among students, there will also be a special session where research students will present their research findings. Prizes will be awarded to the best student presenters.


During the conference, there will be a John Chiphangwi Lecture which will be delivered in honor of late Professor John Chiphangwi, who is the pioneer of the College of Medicine.


At the end of the conference, it is expected that participants will benefit from the deliberations in a number of ways including the following:


  • Share experiences and gain knowledge on recent research findings that could be used for future programming;
  • Identify and analyse existing gaps which could be addressed in future research and
  • Acquire knowledge on the extent to which the College of Medicine and its partners are undertaking research to improve the quality of life of Malawians and mankind.


If you would like to attend the conference, please register in advance by contacting us or

For more information please write to the following e-mail address:

2015rdcenquiries@medcol.mwor call any of the following telephone numbers:

+265 (0)993 137 527 (Mrs Lucia Msiska) / +265 (0)888 123 811 (Mrs Regina Chikuse)

Postgraduate Programmes

The College of Medicine is inviting applications from suitably qualified candidates to pursue the following various postgraduate programmes


  1. Masters in Medicine (MMed) Programs

These are 4-year medical specialty training programs in the following areas:

  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
  8. Master in Medicine in Emergency Medicine
  9. Master in Medicine in Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  10. Master in Medicine in Family Medicine


MMED scholarship opportunities:  Limited scholarships are available for highly competitive applicants for MMED programs in Anaesthesia, Paediatrics & Child Health, General Surgery, Obstetrics & Gynaecology and Internal Medicine. Applicants for the MMED (Internal Medicine) program will be eligible to compete for training posts in the United Kingdom after successfully completing two years of their studies in Malawi.

  1. Fellowship Training Programs

These are 4-5 years medical specialty training programs offered by College of Surgeons of East Central and Southern Africa (COSECSA) in the following areas:

  1. General Surgery
  2. Orthopaedics
  3. ENT (Ear Nose and Throat)
  4. Plastic surgery

 Fellowship training programs in General surgery and Orthopaedics will be conducted at either Kamuzu Central Hospital or Queen Elizabeth Central hospital, while ENT and Plastic Surgery will only be conducted at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital.

Admission Requirements for MMED and Fellowship Training Programs:

  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
  3. Two years post-internship work experience

The College receives applications all year round. However, the deadline for receiving applications is 30th October 2015 for the admissions scheduled for 1st March 2016. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interviews to be conducted on 24th and 25th November 2015

1. Master in Public Health (MPH) Program

This is a 2-year block-release program. Applicants for this program may choose to major in Health Management, Bioethics, Epidemiology, Reproductive Health, Nutrition or Bioinformatics. Note that students in this program may graduate with a Postgraduate Diploma in Public Health if they complete all coursework BUT not a thesis. 

Admission Requirements for MPH program:

  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

The College receives applications all year round. However, for each September intake we will only consider applications received before Friday, 26th February of the year they wish to enrol. The next intake will be in September 2016.

2. Master of Philosophy (MPhil) / Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Program

These are postgraduate degree programs by research (2 years for MPhil; 3-4 years for PhD). Candidates may apply to be considered for a) the University of Malawi PhD degree program or b) the Joint College of Medicine-University of Liverpool PhD degree programs.

Candidates applying for these research degrees are strongly advised to have preliminary discussions with the relevant Heads of academic departments at CoM to enable matching of prospective student to supervisors or research groups and to develop research concepts before submitting an application.

Scholarship opportunities:

With funding from the National Institutes of Health-Fogarty International Centre in the USA, the CoM has established the Malawi HIV Implementation Science Research Training Program (M-HIRST) to increase the capacity of Malawian researchers to conduct high quality implementation science research. Applicants who propose HIV implementation science projects as the basis for the master’s degree thesis or MPhil/PhD program will be considered for tuition support based on merit of the proposal, research aptitude of the applicant, and potential of the applicant to be a leader in HIV implementation science.

With funding from Gates Foundation, scholarships are available for candidates interested in undertaking PhD studies in Biochemistry in the context of Nutrition. Successful candidates will be part of a highly experienced and dynamic interdisciplinary research group linked with nutrition research networks worldwide.

Admission Requirements for MPhil and PhD programs:

  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

All PhD applicants should submit a research concept which includes the following sections; Introduction, Objectives and Methodology.

3. Research Fellowships

In addition to PhD scholarships, the M-HIRST programme will also support academics/research scientists employed in the College of Medicine or its recognized local research implementation partners to develop their implementation science skills so that they can progress towards research independence.  CoM will offer a 2 year fellowship which will provide modest salary support, access to funding for small research grants, participation in short course programs in key research skills and access to research mentors in Implementation science.

Admission requirements for research fellowships:

  1. Completed MMED (or equivalent) in relevant subject or
  2. PhD in relevant subject or
  3. Medical Degree with Master’s in Public Health or equivalent
  4. Employees of the College of Medicine or its research implementation partners

M-HIRST scholarship applicants should include the following; an updated copy of the curriculum vitae, personal statement demonstrating their interest in HIV Implementation Science and career objectives, additional reference from proposed research supervisor and two-page research proposal, which includes “Introduction, Objectives and Methodology” sections.

The deadline for receiving MPhil, PhD and research fellowship applications is Friday, 30th October 2015 for the admissions scheduled for 1st February 2016. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interviews to be conducted on 24th and 25th November 2015.

Applications for all programs should include:

  1. A completed postgraduate application form. The forms are available at CoM Central 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)

A non-refundable application fee of MK8000.00 for Malawians and $300.00 for non-Malawians.

Payment should be made to:






Application forms that do not meet the requirements stated above will not be processed.

Completed application should be sent:

The Registrar

College of Medicine

Private Bag 360


Blantyre 3, Malawi

Attention: Assistant Registrar (Academic)

Tel: + 265 (0) 1 874 107, Fax +265 (0) 1 874 700





Malawian Med Student: ‘Global Health Brought Out the Activist in Me’

Ndifanji Melia Namacha, 22, is completing her final year of medical school in the College of Medicine at the University of Malawi. Last fall she finished a family medicine rotation in Neno, a remote rural district where Partners In Health works. Here she shares her thoughts and experiences—the beginning, she says, of a medical career devoted to global health.

For my family medicine rotation I decided to go to Neno, where I had never been before. Everyone I asked about it said, “It’s in the middle of nowhere.” Although it required some bravery to go, for me, this is what medicine is about—providing care where nobody else does. My time in Neno was a major stepping-stone. It led to a global health course in the Netherlands, which opened my eyes to global health.

My parents have always encouraged me to make challenging decisions, and I think that has made me a risk-taker. When the day came to travel to Neno, Partners In Health collected four classmates and me from my home city, Blantyre. Travelling up the hills to Neno was a beautiful experience. I admire doctors who leave their comfort zones to work in Africa; I felt the same coming from the city. This was me living the dream. I felt like a doctor with no border.

I was in Neno for four weeks, and I did not leave the district the entire time. It was enough time to adjust to the heat and a new working environment. On arriving, I was encouraged to hear from classmates who completed the last family medicine rotation that we would perform procedures we had only seen in books, never in public hospitals. We learned about everything from pediatrics to geriatrics. And PIH’s role at the district hospital allowed us full access to rapid diagnostic tests—something you don’t usually experience in a government public hospital.

PIH’s work in Neno is a great example of family medicine. They have an excellent home-based care system run by village health workers. And they provide social assistance through financial aid and by helping patients start their own small businesses. I was also impressed by how many HIV patients are receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART).

It was in Neno when I realized that the causes of major global health challenges are beyond a medical degree and include economic development, climate change, public policy, business, and management. Global health is for the critical mind—for those doctors who always want to know, “WHY?”

And that was me in November 2014, when I sat in the HIV Testing and Counseling clinic in Neno. A 35-year-old mother of three walked in with her 3-year-old son, David*, whom she wanted to get retested. David had been on ART since he was 2, but she was still not convinced he was positive because she, his father, and David’s siblings were negative. But after retesting, his results were still positive.

I sat quietly in the corner of the room. The mother was told to continue David on ART. She left the room hopeless, just as she came in, carrying the child on her back.

I felt the mother had not been fully managed. What about her psychological and social needs? I want to be that doctor who looks beyond the disease at each and every determinant of health—be it social, economic, or political—and apply them in my clinical practice.

I brought it up in the morning handover the next day. To my surprise, PIH Medical Officer Dr. Noel Kalanga asked me to make further enquiries about the case and write it up. This experience led me to look holistically at medicine. Are we providing the highest standard of care? And what happens when we don’t? Global health brought out the activist in me.

My time in Neno influenced me to apply for a summer school program in global health at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. I was successful and joined 30 medical students from other countries. I was one of two students representing Africa.

The summer school was an amazing opportunity and what I call my baptism into a career in global health. I learned that, although it is of great importance that each nation develop solutions that are localized to address most of its health problems, some health issues are best resolved using a global approach.

Global health suits me perfectly and allows me to look at the major challenges beyond clinical medicine. I learned to look critically at health systems and not just to move inside them. I saw ethics and legal frameworks in medicine, cultural diversity, global epidemiology, and socioeconomic and environmental determinants surrounding 3-year-old David and his mother.

Looking back at my time in Neno at the district hospital, I believe there is so much that other district hospitals can learn. Serving in a remote place is challenging. It was encouraging to see PIH health workers and Ministry of Health staff working tirelessly to provide care to patients.

I believe I am being trained to serve Malawi and Africa. I feel I better understand what it takes to treat patients in poor countries. After my time in the Netherlands, I know I have more to learn from other health systems around the world, and I’d like to get exposed to them and bring experiences home. My goal in life is to work for an international organization as a global health specialist, to be involved in clinical research, and to work across borders.
*The patient’s name has been changed.

Source :: Partiners in Health

FIP-UNESCO UNITWIN African Centre of Excellence in Pharmacy Education

Pharmacy Department of College of Medicine joins African Centre of
Excellence in Pharmacy Education

Access to medicines, and correct use of drugs, are cornerstones of
health care. In 2006, the College of Medicine in Blantyre established
the first academic training programme for pharmacists in Malawi, to help
addressing the wide-spread problems of drug shortages, inappropriate
quality of medicines, and irrational use of drugs. The successful
development of this academic department has now been internationally
recognized in a ceremony which took place in Blantyre on Saturday June
13th. Representatives of the International Pharmaceutical Federation
(FIP), in collaboration with the United Nations Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), signed an agreement with College of
Medicine which makes the young Pharmacy Department a new member of the
FIP-UNESCO UNITWIN African Centre of Excellence in Pharmacy Education.
This Centre of Excellence comprises outstanding schools of pharmacy, so
far from Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, Namibia, Zambia and now Malawi. It is a
UNESCO sponsored initiative hosted under the UNITWIN scheme (for
university-twinning). This UNITWIN collaboration is the first ever in
the field of higher education for health professionals and the first for
global pharmaceutical education. In bringing together pharmacy schools
from all regions of the world with UNESCO and FIP, the UNITWIN Network
in Global Pharmacy Education Development (GPhEd) will enable
synchronised and powerful development in pharmacy and pharmaceutical
sciences education and improve communication for scientific innovation,
healthcare outcomes, and ultimately, the attainment of the Millennium
Development Goals (MDGs).
The signing of the agreement took place during the 3rd Annual Summit of
the FIP-UNESCO UNITWIN African Centre of Excellence, held on June 12 and
13 in Blantyre upon invitation of College of Medicine, University of
Malawi. This meeting was attended by participants from 10 different
countries, including the President of the Academic Section of FIP, Prof.
Ralph Altiere, University of Colorado, USA, and the Director of the
Centre of Excellence, Prof. Jennifer Marriott, Monash University,
Australia. Dr. Mwapatsa Mipando, Acting Prinicipal of the College of
Medicine, signed the membership agreement. Mrs. Nettie Dzabala MSc
Pharm, Head of Pharmacy Department, signed an additional Memorandum of
Understanding between the Pharmacy Department and FIP regarding a
collaborative project termed “Lab Box Project”. Under this project, FIP
has provided 50 boxes with basic laboratory equipment for lab practicals
within the pharmacy training at College of Medicine.

Websites for further information:

Free medical textbooks on Internal Medicine, Gastroenterology & Hepatology

Get access to free medical textbooks available through  These medically-current books should assist students, staff and colleagues with preparation for OSCEs and Boards, while deepening knowledge across Internal Medicine, Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

Scottish Government representatives visit College of Medicine

Magnus Maharg, Joanna Keating (International Development – Scottish Government), Fiona Lappin (UK DfID Scotland Policy Lead) visited College of Medicine to see and discuss the impact the Scottish Government funding has had on the College over the last few years.

Tree planting exercise

The University of Malawi shall be celebrating 50 years of existence in September 2015. As part of the celebration, the College of Medicine participated in the function of planting 50 trees around the college to symbolise the 50 years

Mature Entry 2015/16

2015/2016 university of Malawi selection of mature entry non-residential students

The University of Malawi (UNIMA) is pleased to announce names of candidates who have been selected to pursue various programmes for the 2015/2016 academic year as mature entry students on non-residential and self-sponsored basis.

All successful candidates should note that they shall be required to find and pay for their own accommodation and meals.

Candidates are further advised to contact their respective Colleges regarding the starting dates for the 2015/2016 academic year. The tuition fees/contributions per academic year, tentatively remain the ones which were indicated on the application forms for admission to various programmes. However, the fees/contributions are subject to change any time and students will be informed about the same accordingly.

Names of candidates who are selected to pursue the Degree of Bachelor of Arts (Human Resource Management) programme will be communicated in due course.

The list of successful candidates is available here and on all official notice boards of the constituent colleges of the University of Malawi and on the following websites, and  The list can also be accessed from the following public group on Facebook:

Further details regarding the 2015/2016 intake for mature students can be obtained from the University Office during working days from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. using the following phone number: (+265) 1 526 622 (switchboard line).

For more College specific information concerning fees, accommodation and other issues, contact the particular College Registrar using the following details:

1          Chancellor College – P.O. Box 280, Zomba, Tel: (+265) 1 524 222, Fax: (+265) 1 524 046, Email:,

2          College of Medicine – P/Bag 360, Blantyre, Tel: (+265) 1 877 245, Fax: (+265) 1 872 291, Email:,

3          Kamuzu College of Nursing – P/Bag 1, Lilongwe, Tel: (+265) 1 751 622, Fax: (+265) 1 750 506, Email:

4          The Polytechnic – P/Bag 303, Chichiri, Blantyre, Tel: (+265) 1 870 411, Fax: (+265) 1 870 578, Email:

University Registrar                                     Wednesday, 19th August, 2015 

Sharing Healthcare resources in malawi

With the support from University of Edinburgh, CoM in conjunction with other colleges in the field of health have developed a website where users can share Healthcare resources online. For more details email to . The ICT Department will organize an orientation session about the resources website in few weeks coming. Meanwhile you can visit the site on

Poster Award

The Society of Research Administrators International awarded “Best Poster of the Year” to Esther Gondwe, who is a research administrator for the University of Malawi, College of Medicine and Lynn Mande, a reseach administrator in the Michigan State University Department of Osteopathic Medical Specialities at its 2014 symposium in San Diego.