Guiding the development of family medicine training in Africa through collaboration with the Medical Education Partnership Initiative

Acad Med. 2014 Aug;89(8 Suppl):S73-7. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000000328.


Africa's health care challenges include a high burden of disease, low life expectancy, health workforce shortages, and varying degrees of commitment to primary health care on the part of policy makers and government officials. One overarching goal of the Medical Education Partnership Initiative (MEPI) is to develop models of medical education in Sub-Saharan Africa. To do this, MEPI has created a network of universities and other institutions that, among other things, recognizes the importance of supporting training programs in family medicine. This article provides a framework for assessing the stage of the development of family medicine training in Africa, including the challenges that were encountered and how educational organizations can help to address them. A modified "stages of change" model (precontemplation, contemplation, action, maintenance, and relapse) was used as a conceptual framework to understand the various phases that countries go through in developing family medicine in the public sector and to determine the type of assistance that is useful at each phase.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Africa South of the Sahara
  • Curriculum
  • Diffusion of Innovation
  • Education, Medical / organization & administration*
  • Family Practice / education*
  • Humans
  • International Cooperation*
  • Program Development
  • Schools, Medical / organization & administration*
  • United States