The Necessity for Reviewing and Improving Housemanship (Internship) Training in Nigerian Health Institutions
AbstractGone are the days when a newly qualified medical doctor in Nigeria has a choice to undertake housemanship training among varieties of available accredited health institutions by Nigeria medical and dental council. House-manship has now become a difficult and highly competitive hurdle to cross in the training of doctors in Nigeria. Surprisingly enough, in some centres these young doctors are not formally examined for competence, proficiency and morals. In most occasions, the interns were given a satisfactory completion certificate when the training is poorly or not thoroughly supervised. The interns are required to spend three months each in only four clinical disciplines without any experience in Primary Health Care Centres as rural posting apart from the little experience during undergraduate training. Some of these young doctors often use internship period to prepare for primary exams that would enable them to pursue residency-training program (postgraduate study). Authors’ observation and experience were described in this article. Literatures were reviewed on how this pathetic and heart feeling situation could be improved. The study also looked into the inclusion of community/rural health practice in the internship training so that young doctors and the community can havethe maximum benefit of this phase of the medical training. This study revealed lack of proper examination of interns for competence, proficiency and morals. Excellent housemanship (internship) training can only be achieved by thorough monitoring and supervision by consultants in charge as well as active participation of the interns. If the prevailing status ofinternship training does not change according to the suggested recommendations, this indispensable component of medical training will continue to worsen, thereby preventing these doctors from being highly technically competent and morally sound to compare favourably well with their peers across the globe and to serve the needs of our peculiar healthcare system.Key Words: Housemanship, reviewing, improving, training, health institution.