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Cameroon – Health: the National Order of Doctors warns against medical campaigns with foreign teams

by Theophile
Dr Rodolphe Fonkoua

The president of the Order of Physicians of Cameroon (ONMC) is sounding the alarm on fairground medicine campaigns organized by foreign medical teams.

For Dr Rodolphe Fonkoua, these campaigns carry many risks. According to the ONMC, these campaigns do not provide reassurance about the qualifications, administrative situation, expertise and professional experience of some of their members. In addition, the Order notes that “the technical reception platforms are in certain circumstances insufficient or incomplete in relation to the ordinary working framework of these original foreign medical teams”. Clearly, the Order suspects these foreign medical teams of offering low-end medical services in Cameroon.

To this must be added “insufficient” coordination between these teams and local medical teams. Which, according to Dr Fonkoua, slows down the “transfer of skills and post-intervention clinical monitoring”. These campaigns have another disadvantage, underlines the ONMC: the difficulty in identifying the structure or the person designated to assume administrative, civil, criminal or ordinal responsibilities in the event of medical incidents.

For all these grievances, the Order undertakes to provide “procedures for inviting or receiving foreign medical missions (…) while respecting legal provisions”. Because underlines Dr Fonkoua, these missions “are part of the illegal practice of medicine”.

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