Dear Global Health Fellow
You need to be aware of recent changes to the relationship between Africa Health Placements (AHP) and Health Education England (HEE). Global Health Fellows due to be deployed in 2018 will need to pay a fee to process their applications. I will attempt to explain some of the background.
Africa Health Placements (AHP) is a social profit organisation (charity) that offers Global Health experiences to doctors. It is based in Johannesburg SA and is a registered charity in the UK.
In partnership with the Global Health Exchange (HEE) AHP has been placing GP/GH trainees into established level 1 resource poor rural hospitals across South Africa for almost 10 years.
The Global Health Fellowship Programme gives doctors the opportunity to develop their practical, decision making and leadership skills during their speciality training years whilst providing healthcare in a rural South African community and hospital usually in dire need of additional medical manpower.
There is much to be gained from a Global Health experience but it is also extremely challenging. In our experience only the most committed and resilient doctors make it all the way through to deployment and beyond. From the complicated and often delayed placements and registration process, to the difficulties of working in a resource poor hospital and rural community lacking many of the tools and supports that you have come to rely on, requires a tough and flexible doctor. However, the experience also offers a unique opportunity for personal and professional growth, and in an environment in which you will earn a competitive salary and benefit from the many in-service support structures provided to empower Global Health Fellows to get the most from their 12 month placement.
Until recently, the services offered by AHP were funded by donor organisations, mostly from the US. As a result of a change in the donor environment, AHP is no longer funded to assist the deployment of UK doctors to the hospitals and communities which so desperately need them. As a result, GHFs who wish to invest in their career through a Global Health experience will need to personally fund the costs of the administration, organisational and support services associated with their placement. As agreed between AHP and the GHE/HEE this will be a subsidised fee of £4000, payable in stages with the final payment due after taking up a post in South Africa. In our experience most GHFs return to the UK after a 12 month deployment in credit.
As well as assistance with medical registration, work permits, visas and getting a job as a rural doctor in SA, AHP are also offering a comprehensive range of options to Global Health Fellows. The GHF package includes a 12 month placement as a GHF in a risk assessed environment, together with substantial pastoral, educational and social and support benefits. The cost is subsided for GHFs and needs to be set against the salary of a rural MO in SA (currently circa £40K GBP) and an unpredictable and volatile GBP/ZAR exchange rate, which can work both for and against your earnings in GBP.
If you are a Round 2 August 2018 ST1 Global Health Fellow applicant, you will be invited to meet with the GH Lead in your Deanery to discuss your application.
If you are already a GH ST1 or ST2, a member of AHP's recruitment team is anxious to talk to you as soon as possible about the benefits of a Global Health Experience and what AHP can offer. Both HEE and AHP want to be sure that this is the right choice for you as an individual.
Dr Robin While
Global Health Fellowship Programme Lead
Health Education England