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E-DRUG: African Course for Problem-based Pharmacotherapy Teaching

COURSE ANNOUNCEMENT - CALL FOR PARTICIPANTS

The University of Cape Town, in collaboration with the World Health 
Organisation Drug Action Programme and the University of Groningen 
Faculty of Medicine will be holding the first

    AFRICAN COURSE FOR PROBLEM BASED PHARMACOTHERAPY TEACHING
                    25 November - 6 December 1996
                University of Cape Town, South Africa

COURSE OBJECTIVE
To teach teachers of pharmacology and therapeutics to equip their 
students with adequate skills and knowledge to prescribe drugs 
rationally. The course will enable participants to plan, develop and 
implement this problem-based teaching method at their local medical 
school or teaching institution.

COURSE RATIONALE
Irrational drug choice is prevalent in both the industrialised and 
developing countries. As a result drug therapy may prove ineffective, 
unnecessarily expensive or unsafe. Contempory medical education 
emphasises diagnosis. Undergraduate teaching in therapeutics is still 
a neglected topic in most institutions. To respond to the need to 
teach the skills needed for rational drug choice and prescription, a 
teaching method was developed by the University of Groningen (the 
Netherlands), based on the theories of problem-solving and normative 
decision analysis. The University of Groningen is unable to meet the 
demand from therapeutics teachers in Africa to participate in their 
Summer Course on Problem-based Pharmacotherapy Teaching. 

The Department of Pharmacology of the University of Cape Town (UCT) 
has been selected as the most suitable medical school to host the 
African Course for Problem-based Pharmacotherapy Teaching. This 
decision was based on UCT's insights into the needs of teachers in 
medical schools in Africa, and its particular interest in medical 
education. By hosting this course the Department of Pharmacology is 
supporting its mission as a World Health Organization Collaborating 
Centre to promote the rational use of medicines in the sub-Saharan 
Africa region.

COURSE METHOD
The African Course is based on the methodology developed by the 
University of Groningen, with some adaptation of the course content 
to better meet the needs of therapeutics teachers in Africa. It 
introduces a logical, step-by-step approach to a patient problem: 
setting therapeutic objectives, selecting appropriate (pharmaco)
therapy, and monitoring the response to therapy. It also emphasises
the importance of correct prescribing and good patient-doctor
communication.

COURSE RESULTS
The effects of the Groningen method were evaluated in 1991 and 1992 
in 7 medical schools in developed and developing countries. The 
results showed that the training course significantly improved the 
ability of students to solve written patient problems. Both retention 
of these skills and the ability to transfer these skills to new 
patient problems were present at least 6 months after the training 
session, in all 7 medical schools.

COURSE FACILITATORS
The course will be jointly facilitated by staff of the Universities 
of Cape Town and Groningen.

COURSE PARTICIPANTS
Lecturers and teachers of Pharmacology and Therapeutics at Medical 
Schools and Postgraduate Teaching Institutions are invited to 
participate in this course. Unfortunately, only English-speaking 
participants can be accomodated as the course will be conducted in 
English.              

COURSE FEE
The course fee is US$ 2 900; including full board and lodging, 
tuition fees and educational material, but excluding travel expenses.

APPLICATION DEADLINE
1 August 1996

MORE INFORMATION
For more information, and requests for registration and funding 
application forms, please contact:

    Julia Stallard
    Postgraduate Conference Division
    University of Cape Town Medical School
    Observatory  7925
    South Africa
    
    email:  julia@medicine.uct.ac.za
    tel:    27-21-406 6407
    fax:    27-21-448 6263


******************************************************
Dr Karen Barnes
Department of Clinical Pharmacology
University of Cape Town Medical School
Observatory  7925
South Africa

telephone:  27-21-406 6293/4
facsimile:  27-21-448 6181
******************************************************


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