The Malawi College of Medicine on Saturday held a day-long conference at the campus where it presented several research topics. The conference was the 16th in series held annually.
The conference was organised to share findings from research studies to keep the public, researchers, and policy makers informed of current research activities relevant to human health in Malawi.
There were over 30 presentations on the day that were categorized into malaria, HIV and AIDS, non communicable diseases, maternal and child health, and lastly, microbiology and health systems.
The presenters were drawn from different health sectors in the country and all the universities and among them, the well known Radiologist Clinician, Doctor Sam Kampondeni whose research was on ‘quantitative measure of brain swelling on MRI scans predicts outcome in pediatric cerebral malaria’.
South African based Professor, Bongani Mayosi opened the session with a presentation on non communicable diseases in Africa.
Some of the findings from the research were that patients were given anti-malarial drugs even though they were not diagnosed with it and this was the best voted research on the day whose author is Alfred Kamoto of College of Medicine.
He said, “I had 315 respondents (patients), out of that 299 had undergone testing and the remaining 16 did not have any diagnostic procedure done on them yet all of them ended up receiving anti-malarials. The current malaria treatment guidelines stipulate that adults should be given anti malarias when there is positive indication.
“I am very much humbled, I thank God for this award and I do not take it for granted.”
Another research found out that Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs) were still playing a big role in Malawi despite some controversy surrounding them and the ministry of health. It found out that most women in rural areas prefer TBAs to hospital midwives.
There was also a memorial lecture for Professor John Chiphangwi who was one of the pioneers, founder and first Malawian Principal of the college of Medicine. He is remembered for his tireless efforts to create an enabling environment for research at the institution.
Due to what transpired on the day, the organizers were considering increasing the duration of the conference as speakers were rushed so as to catch up with time.
Some of the private institutions that provided assistance to the conference included Zodiak Broadcasting Station, New Building Society, Clinton Health Access Initiative and Deutsche Gesellschaftfuer Internationale Zusammenarbeit and Malawi Liverpool welcome Trust Clinical Research Programme.
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