The National University of Medical Sciences (NUMS) conducted a half-day seminar on a proposed "NUMS two year Family Medicine and Emergency Care Masters Residency Training Program" on Friday Sept 8, 2017. The program was attended by the Vice Chancellor, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Deans of Medicine, Nursing, Academic Development and Research, and Department Heads of Surgery/ Emergency Medicine and representatives of Armed Forces Postgraduate Medical Institute and Departments of Obstetrics-Gynaecology and Paediatrics, from both Military Hospital and Combined Military Hospital, Rawalpindi. The invited keynote speaker was Prof Riaz Qureshi, Founding Chair, Family Medicine and presently, Professor and Consultant Outreach projects, Agha Khan University, Karachi.
Prof Qureshi highlighted the challenges and opportunities in establishing Family Medicine training programs in Pakistan inclusive of both 2 years Masters and 4 year FCPS models, and stressed on the national need for a strong Family Medicine/primary care based healthcare delivery system in Pakistan. He shared his national and international experiences with pioneering similar models in Saudi Arabian Armed Forces Hospitals and the MRCGP International program with the Royal College, UK. Prof Mujtaba Quadri, Dean Academic Development and Research proposed a flexible semester system based on blended two year Masters model utilising structured on-site rotations, self-study modules on patient safety, preventive health, evidence based practice and quality audits, an academic half-day, longitudinal Family Medicine ambulatory experience and Emergency Room on call model. Prof Rafat Jan, Dean Nursing introduced a structured competency based model of Advanced Nursing Practice developed by her in collaboration with international experts.
This was followed by an open discussion forum chaired by the Vice Chancellor, Lt General Imran Majeed where key steps, opportunities and solutions to potential barriers in establishing Family Medicine at NUMS were addressed. The two year Masters semester based model was supported as an indigenous solution for the University affiliated institutions' specific needs. A small group discussion followed with Prof Qureshi and inputs were solicited from Director Academics, Head of Surgery Department, CMH, Maj Gen Irfan Ali Sheikh, Associate Prof and Head of Community Health Sciences Dr Saima Pervaiz Iqbal, guest faculty from Shifa Tameer-e- Millat University and Dean Academic Development and Research.
The team plans to refine curricular content and conform to HEC and PMDC requirements for a Maters program and to retain flexibility for candidates to progress to FCPS in Family Medicine.