Paediatric surgery in the RSA - practice and training
A survey of the current practice 'of general paediatric surgery in South Africa and Namibia was conducted by tneans of a postal questionnaire. One hundred and eighty-one replies were obtained (52%).
Analysis showed that although surgeons are located predominantly in the major cities, 18% practised in the larger towns or rural areas. Although paediatric surgery represents a small volume of their work, most surgeons do attend to the surgical needs of children. The majority of surgeons have received some paediatric surgical training but this was considered inadequate by nearly half of all surgeons and by 60% of those who qualified in the last 10 years.
Current postgraduate training at most of our universities involves a 3 - 6-month rotation, but from our survey this is considered insufficient in practice and there appears to have been some deterioration in paediatric surgical training in recent years. Steps needed to maintain paediatric surgical standards are discussed.
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