It has been quite challenging managing a house move on the 1st of September 2020. It knocks one for 6 weeks before and months later…

Nonetheless, it was exciting being part of the virtual AfroPHC Workshop 9-11 September 2020. There are resources and a report from the workshop. We hope to issue a statement capturing the vision and principles of AfroPHC that emerged from the ±400 who registered for it. Very exciting and interactive!

After the very successful series on COVID-19 in Africa, Wonca Africa is having a webinar series on Friday afternoons called “Family Medicine in Action in Africa”. Family physicians practicing on the ground will be asked to share a bit about themselves and their context, and then share a project/programme that they run that reflects the work done by family physicians, the team work involved and the way in which communities are engaged. The first one will be on 23rd October 2020. I will speak about work in Chiawelo. See here for more. There are several family physicians lined up but if you are a family physician in Africa and have something interesting you are doing as part of a PHC team, and with the community, please share your story in this webinar series. Start by emailing me.

Another interesting set of global webinars is being run by Wonca on Sunday afternoons, involving the various working parties and special interest groups of Wonca. See the details on the Wonca website. There was an interesting webinar on eHealth last week. The Wonca International Classification  Committee (WICC) has completed ICPC 3, capturing a range of data from our primary care consultations. You can field test ICPC 3.

Wonca and AfroPHC are supporting a campaign titled “30b2030” which aims to get decision-makers aware of the impact of vertical programmes and encourage 30% of donor funding going to strengthen primary health care services globally by 2030. See the article I co-authored on behalf of AfroPHC, in the WHO Bulletin.

Wonca Africa is also engaging in a Primary Care Dialogue with other Wonca Regions. If you are a family physician join the WONCA PC Dialogues 22nd Oct between Wonca South Asia and Wonca Africa. Email me for details. The idea is to have group discussions among regional leaders getting to know the way family doctors work in each other’s regions and how we can collaborate. We hope to share a statement after that.

I will be part of and speaking at the virtual Primafamed Conference on 28th October 2020. Primafamed is a network of family medicine departments across Africa and the official academic arm of Wonca Africa. The meeting will share innovations and achievements in family medicine and primary care education and research, and then break out into useful workshops around distributed clinical training, ICPC 3, lessons from COVID-19, and mixed methods study design.

I will also be part of and speaking at the virtual Advanced Practice Nurse Educational Leadership Symposium on 27th/28th November 2020. This is a network of nursing activists who are trying to advance the role of the family practice nurse in Africa. The meeting will have breakout workshops examining: Health service delivery-Scope of Practice; Regulation; Educational Standards; and Interprofessional Education & Collaborative Practice. There are currently no standardised African frameworks for curriculum and the network is open to the support of family doctors. I hope I can synergise efforts between Primafamed and the APN network.

Closer to home the Wits Family Medicine Department is hosting an inter-disciplinary webinar series titled ”Pandemic Pangolins”, bringing a Health Systems Science lens to COVID responses in South Africa. As the chair of the Johannesburg District Research Committee (DRC) I will be hosting the monthly webinar Jhb DRC webinar. On 4th November 2-4pm we will have Prof Shabir Madhi (Dean-elect from the Wits Faculty of Health Sciences) speak on collaborations between Wits and the Jhb DRC as well as tips for novice researchers. His colleagues from Respiratory and Meningeal Pathogens Research Unit in Wits will share work done in Jhb. Join us https://profmoosa.com/webinar-phc-research-in-jhb-2-4pm-4th-nov-2020/ . You can also see recordings of the previous DRC webinars with important information on doing research in Johannesburg.

My home base, the Johannesburg Health District, has a weekly Continuing Professional Development meeting for all its doctors with interesting clinical topics from experts in Johannesburg. Young Interns rotating in the district for family medicine also present in a weekly meeting of intern. Feel free to join both.

Our efforts at Clinical Governance in Johannesburg have been focused on COVID-19. I have been drawn by Johannesburg managers into developing a programme of delivery of chronic medicines by community health workers (CHWs). As a family physician I have tried to shift the focus to improvement of quality of care with the community-based effort. Have a look at the CHW delivery and case management programme, where we strengthen chronic care management at clinics, get planned deliveries of medicine by CHWs and then get nurses doing case management in the community. A great way to deliver better care in the community, especially with COVID-19. Many of the poorly performing indicators in Johannesburg have crashed even further. We hope to refocus attention on them as family physicians in Johannesburg….but more on that later.

Check out ProfMoosa.com for some useful stuff.

Pray, keep well and safe!

rgds, Shabir

Prof S. Moosa