13 Seychellois doctors join health ministry |09 October 2019
A grand welcome was extended to 13 newly graduated Seychellois doctors by Health Minister Jean Paul Adam yesterday at the ministry’s headquarters at Mont Fleuri.
Freshly graduated, all the new doctors have already started working at the hospital doing their rotation. In total, 14 doctors are back in the country but one was absent at yesterday’s ceremony. The Ministry of Health is expecting five other new doctors by the end of the year. Most of them studied in Cuba, Slovakia and India.
Minister Adam said to the newcomers that “for every young doctor who joins us, it makes us Seychellois very proud. All of you have dedicated so much of your time and determination to allow yourselves to become qualified doctors. It’s a mark of pride for us because everyone knows that medical degrees do not grow on trees. They are only awarded for hard work and this is across the world. There is no easy way to become a doctor. By being one you have proven that you are not only capable but you are leaders. This is the reality as training as a doctor, no matter what field of medicine you choose you have to be a leader.”
He further encouraged them saying that “as you have all joined the service, it is time for you to learn from the senior doctors such as Dr Michel, Dr Reginald, Dr Mazar and others. We are prioritising for all of you to specialise as soon as possible. I urge you all to think right at the outset in terms of what kind of specialisation you want to do. We understand that some of you want to think about it after seeing all the services, but the earlier you plan, we can decide the way forward.”
Minister Adam also explained that in relation to specialisation, for those who studied in Cuba, the government has a special arrangement with this country for the ones who want to pursue with the specialisation immediately.
“Anybody who wants to proceed for specialisation studies before the end of the rotation can do so. For those who have not done their first degree in Cuba there is also the option for specialisation in Cuba but they just have to learn Spanish. There are also other options for those who studied elsewhere that we are exploring. We have arrangements with South Africa even though the situation is not ideal right now, Tanzania, Reunion island and recently arrangements with India,” said Minister Adam.
“By having you all here we are bringing a new generation of leadership in the health sector. Specialisation does not only mean surgical specialty, it also means family and community medicine. There are a lot of opportunities even in the community for Seychellois doctors to shine. A lot of problems that we face now such as non-communicable diseases need good leaders in the district. We have a number of initiatives that are coming up now and we need strong Seychellois medical leaders to take the forefront,” emphasised Minister Adam.
The minister also said that in collaboration with the Agency for National Human Resource Development (ANHRD) efforts are being made constantly to encourage young Seychellois to take up medicine as a career, not necessarily as doctor but as pharmacists, nurses, lab technicians and other jobs attached to the health services. These courses get high priority.
In the past, some junior doctors complained about their salary and their scheme of service. Minister Adam noted that “indeed the salary scheme has been worked on and in 2019 they got a 10% increase. This is work in progress as we are not there yet. We are working towards looking at the welfare of our doctors as based on the amount of work they do, I would say their salary is still low. To become a specialist, it requires at least ten years of study and we have to remunerate them properly. In consultation with the World Health Organisation, after looking into our health system, they suggested to gradually increasing the investment in our human resources and this is something we proposed to government.”
The new doctors are: Dr Roddy Micock, Dr Colin Telemaque, Dr Rekha Vidot, Dr Dominique Tirant, Dr Kanmani Durga Padayachy, Dr Kavinga Karunakaran, Dr Sebastien Moutou, Dr Maria Stravens, Dr Agnielle Denis, Dr Maria Valentin, Dr Farah Faure, Dr Stephanie Joseph and Dr Sergiy Romenskiy.