The advent of Scientific Meetings at the Bamenda Regional Hospital
One of the main missions of every regional hospital is to carry out operational research which involves having a look at their activities from time to time, to see where things are not going right and come up with corrective measures. To this effect the administration and staff of the Bamenda Regional Hospital hold a scientific meeting every Thursday between 8.00am and 9.00am. According to the Director of the Bamenda Regional Hospital, Dr. Kinge Thompson, work as medical practitioners is science-based. Thursday each week is set aside to revisit difficult cases which have been handled during the week and in future decide which case could be of general interest so that it is discussed in a scientific manner whereby medical personnel come together with different levels of understanding to analyze, do a literature review to know how such cases are handled elsewhere in developed countries for example. Thereafter, the gap between what the personnel are doing and what obtains elsewhere is measured. A procedure is put in place to bridge that gap. Without such auto evaluation the hospital may find out that they are lagging behind in scientific work which exists in other places today, the Director added. The idea of holding scientific meetings was one of the main ideas that Dr. Thompson Kinge instituted upon his arrival at the Bamenda Regional hospital as Director in 2014. The idea was not readily bought by many. Fortunately in 2015, they began to see reason with him and most of them are glad with it because it has proved to be a learning platform for all and sundry.
The meetings span from unit to unit so that it gives an opportunity for a review of a variety of cases. Sometimes the meetings review deaths to see what happened and ask questions like “if the situation had been handled differently, would that patient have died?” It is based on different cases and all services are involved. Once a particular unit is presenting, everyone is involved because health workers at the Bamenda regional hospital share the knowledge that they are health practitioners and can be called upon to work in diverse fields and sections in the medical landscape. This keeps everyone updated with what is happening in other services of the hospital. Since the institution of scientific meetings at the Bamenda regional hospital a lot of grounds have been broken as personnel have testified that they learn a lot from the presentations and literature review and interactions with other colleagues. It equally serves as a great learning platform for students on internship, who now know how to summarize cases, put them on power point, and present them in public since it is equally a required
procedure during the presentation of their theses.
For the components of a scientific meeting, a case has to be analyzed and presented, the processes of diagnosis and treatment looked into and literature reviewed. The team evaluates objectively and comes out with scientific conclusions. These conclusions are summarized, put up to be the main core of the protocol that we have in the management of diseases. Things are streamlined in such a scientific manner that everyone follows the procedure. For personnel who are not part of such scientific meetings, there is no punishment rather the administration makes such individuals know what they are missing out on when it comes to such important medical findings which can help them improve their knowledge as they go about in the exercise of their duty. The Director further encourages all hospital personnel to be part of such productive sessions. For those who are part of the move he urges them to sensitize others to see the significance of the meetings. No one is punished for not attending. Such meetings are important because they help to strike a balance between what obtains in developed countries and back home in Cameroon and the Bamenda Regional Hospital in particular.
Pedmia Shatu Tita