Sunday, October 31, 2010


The University for Development Studies (UDS) in the Northern Region of Ghana is set to achieve yet another great success in one of its academic programmes intended to make products of the School of Medicine and Health Sciences (SMHS) unique among their colleagues from other sister medical schools in the country.

The UDS Medical School which has trained quiet a greater number of medical doctors over the past one and half decades, has in recent years introduced what it called the Problem Based Learning (PBL) methodology into its curriculum aimed at giving specialised training to medical students.

The PBL is aimed at preparing health professionals and scientists, with the right beliefs and attitudes to work in deprive rural communities. It makes students adapt to, initiate change and collaborate within interdisciplinary teams to contribute significantly to humane and cost effective health care.

This unique method of training adopted by the UDS according to its Vice Chancellor, Professor Haruna Yakubu, will make products of the institution become hot-cakes when they finally graduate. Adding that, they will be special in the sense that the enormous health problems facing the people of Northern Ghana in particular would be adequately dealt with.

Prof Yakubu said this at the 3rd Induction Ceremony for 82 Clinical Students of the SMHS of the UDS in Tamale, the Northern Regional capital.

He expressed gratitude to the government and people of Netherlands for providing the human resource development and equipment for kick starting the PBL methodology from the initial stages to this far.

Prof Yakubu stated that all efforts would also be made to recruit any critical staff identified within the shortest possible time through a fast track method adopted for the purposes of the SMHS.

The Vice Chancellor however, acknowledged the inadequate lecture halls at the Tamale Teaching Hospital where the students undertake their clinicals. Adding that, he had set up a committee to use internally generated resources to construct three lecture halls at the hospital which are almost completed, while steps are taken to add other structures including in particular library facilities.

He made a passionate appeal to the Ghana Education Trust Fund to continue to favourably consider the needs of the SMHS. "It is a fact that medical education is expensive and with the absolute depravity of the school, if there is no upward push, the mountain would be more difficult to climb", he philosophised.

The UDS Vice Chancellor further observed that the SMHS is the only campus of the University where the students do not have any hostel accommodation. This situation, he said was very challenging for students who constantly need to consult themselves because of the methodology of training implored.

While the University makes the necessary arrangement to reverse this unacceptable situation, Prof Haruna Yakubu appealed to corporate bodies such as SSNIT, Teachers Funds, and financial institutions that are into estate evelopment to come to their aid by taking advantage of land availability at both the Tamale campus and Teaching Hospital to build suitable accommodation for students.

The Dean of the UDS SMHS, Dr. Edward N. Gyader, observed that the biggest challenge facing the school now is the lack of paediatrics and therefore, appealed to paediatricians in the senior medical schools to accept the challenge and relocate to Tamale. A great career awaits you and you would be counted as pioneers and your sacrifices recognised when the history of University for Development Studies Medical School is written, he promised.

Dr. David Akolbila, Senior Lecturer, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the UDS SMHS in a bried statement, recalled excellence performance by former clinical students who scored not less than 55 percent, something he said was not easily achieved in medical schools in the country.

He challenged the fresh clinical students of the UDS to set good records like their predecessors saying "even if you cannot score 55 percent make sure you don't score below this percentage in order to maintain the standard".

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