Program

PO1-7-17

Teaching Medicines Development in Africa

[Speaker] Helmuth Reuter:1
[Co-author] Lejandra Hanekom:1
1:Clinical Pharmacology, Stellenbosch University, South Africa

Back ground
Until recently, no postgraduate training program has existed in South Africa or other African countries covering the discipline of Medicines Development (Pharmaceutical Medicine). Stellenbosch University's Clinical Pharmacology Division launched a 2-year, part time Postgraduate Diploma in Medicines Development (PG Dip Med Dev) as the first of its kind in Africa. The syllabus and structure of the program is consistent with the standards developed by the PharmaTrain initiative published in its Manual. The program consists of four contact sessions per year (4 days each) and has been presented by 30 experts in their specific fields.
Methods
The following aspects of the PG Dip course were evaluated: (i) Number of students who have completed the PG Diploma course; (ii) Student satisfaction with the course assessing 17 parameters, (iii) Student assessment of the lecturers evaluating the presenter in terms of expertise, content of the lecture and quality of the presentation, and (iv) Student feed-back on the course logistics (3 aspects). All evaluations measured the level of student satisfaction on a Likert scale from 1 - 5, where 1 = very poor and 5 is excellent.
Results
The program has attracted in increasing number of students. Fifty-two students have qualified, seven of whom received distinctions. The numbers of students have increased rapidly from two students in 2012 to five, three, six, 21 and 15 in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017, respectively. Twenty -eight of the 52 students were South African, 16 Zimbabwean, seven from Swaziland and one from Nigeria.
The student's evaluation of the quality of the course was on average 4.15 (ranging from 3.79 to 4.53), their view of the quality of the logistics was on average 4.04 (ranging from 3.93 - 4.13), and the satisfaction with facilitators was on average 4.54 (ranging from 4.34 to 4.71), respectively.

Conclusions
The PG Diploma in Medicine Development has resulted in 52 Africans obtaining a postgraduate qualification in medicines development, the vast majority of these being doctors and pharmacists. The student evaluations have shown a very high level of satisfaction with the course, the lecturers and the course logistics.


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