Working Papers

Identifying the Learning Needs of Primary Care Physicians in Remote Rural Communities Using an Ethnographic Approach

The Philippines currently has a fragmented primary care system with weak preventive and promotive aspects. Modelled on American medical curricula, the Philippine medical education system is decidedly urban-based, specialist-oriented and hospital-centric. As a consequence, undergraduate medical education does not sufficiently prepare graduates to function effectively as primary care physicians (PCPs), particularly to work in the country’s remote, rural provinces (where 55% of the population reside). In order to develop a postgraduate programme for rural PCPs it is paramount to gain insights into the experiences of rural PCPs, to map out the roles and functions of PCPs and to establish which competencies need to be developed.