Latest Event Updates

Visit to Silhouette Medical Centre

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20170511_122711A delegation of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council consisting of the Chairman, Dr B Valentin, the Registrar, Dr S Fock Tave and the Assistant Registrar, Ms May Paule Gallante visited the Silhouette Medical Centre on 11th May.

The delegation was courteously received by staff of the centre, resident doctor German Anaesthesiologist, Dr Thomas Ihmann and the resident nurse, Ann Radin. The purpose of the visit was to explain the old and the new features of the Medical Practitioners and Dentists Act and regulations thereof.  It was also to inspect and learn about the facility.

Silhouette Medical Centre is  managed by the German Company Resortdoc under a tripartite agreement between the Ministry of Health, the Islands Development Company and Labriz Resort, the hotel on the island.

Until 2014, Silhouette Medical Centre and Resortdoc managed the only hyperbaric chamber in Seychelles. Seychelles Hospital is now the main provider of hyperbaric therapy for dive accidents and other uses. Although Silhouette Medical Centre serves only a small and predominantly well clientele, it also boasts of a rudimentary dental service and observation facilities for day cases.

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Getting a feel of the decompression chamber
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Council presents Professional Misconduct regulation at Friday meeting

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Attendees at the Friday CME meeting of 24th February 2017 at the Sheikh Khalifa Diagnostic Centre at Seychelles Hospital stayed behind for nearly two hours to hear the officials of the Council explain the content of the new Professional Misconduct regulation. The new regulation is expected to come into force soon.

The regulation was generally well received except for the provision that requires medical practitioners and dentists to always have a chaperone when examining a patient. That part of the regulation was the subject of protracted debate. Many doctors felt that, in the local context, it could not be implemented as prescribed as there are too few nurses to act as chaperone. Others felt otherwise.

The discussion on chaperone or not, extended to the social media after the meeting. Even after presentation of documentation from United Kingdom’s Good Practice Guidance and Medical Proection Society,  views remained divided as to whether chaperones should be mandatory in all circumstances in Seychelles .

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Having a chaperone even when the examination is not intimate is never a bad idea according to some doctors

“I was taught that,” said one doctor.  “I never examine male patients by myself. But it adds on to an extra personnel in the room. So waiting time will increase which is the reverse of the expectations from public.”

I support it,” said another. “Partly because it makes a patient more comfortable especially on first (and short) visits where good rapport has not been built, and partly because of the increasing trend in defensive medicine and litigation threats in Seychelles…”

“It should not be mandatory!” added another. “I also support the comments which came up from the floor during today’s meeting mentioning practical difficulties like lack of staff, patient privacy (especially in the private set-up where patients demands for privacy!”

“Inappropriate touching need not involve the private parts,” clarified another doctor. “There is also the issue of propositioning patients, lewd remarks etc…”

The Council has noted all views and will intervene appropriately.

Before the presentation of the regulation, the Registrar of the Council presented the work of the Council insofar as registration and disciplinary matters are concerned.

First Inter-Council Meeting

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Leaders of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council (Dr Bernard Valentin and Dr Susan Fock Tave), Seychelles Nurses and Midwives Council (Mr John Dubel and Ms Winnifred Agricole) and Health Professionals Council (Mrs Patricia Rene and Mr Daniel Belmont) held their very first Inter Council Meeting this week, Wednesday 1st February 2017.

The meeting was held in the new offices of the SMDC located on the third floor of La Ciotat building in apartment number 6.

The Agenda of the meeting was set as “common interest to improve the health of the nation”. The three councils discussed a wide array of subjects ranging from legislation, recognition of qualifications, continuous professional development, scope of practice and  identity cards, among many other topics.

The next Inter Council Meeting will be in three months’ time.

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Leaders of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council (SMDC), the Seychelles Nurses and Midwives Council and the Health Professionals Council at the first Inter Council Meeting held on the 1st February 2017 at the Headquarters of the SMDC

Leaders aspire to more synergy between professional councils

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As the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council ponders its move to new offices outside of the compound of the Ministry of Health, the leaders of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council, the Seychelles Nurses and Midwives Council and the Council of the other Health Professionals have expressed the desire to work in closer partnership in 2017.

They aspire to unify their small entities under one bigger, better umbrella organization, as has been done in Australia and South Africa.

“For this to happen, the laws that constitute the three councils have to change,” said Dr Bernard Valentin, Chairman of Seychelles Medical and Dental Council. “But even before the law changes, we can do a lot more together,” he added.

At the fortnightly collaborative person-centered care (PCC) meeting last week, the Chairman of the Health Professionals Council, Patricia Rene and the Registrar of the Seychelles Nurses and Midwives Council, Winnifred Agricole, expressed similar views.

During 2016, the Councils worked together to organize and promote continuous professional development and careers in health. The ongoing collaboration on PCC is a direct result of this deepening synergy.

“Such purposeful collaboration will intensify in 2017,” said Mrs Patricia Rene.

 

New look!

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cropped-image.jpgThose who were familiar with the website of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council will have noticed our new look.

The new look comes after several trials for a modern website that departs significantly from the previous and that reflects what the Council is and wants to be at this juncture of its existence.

We have not departed significantly from our corporate colours (the customary blue) but we have made the pages look new and refreshing, something  we hope our visitors will like.

In the coming weeks we will be uploading as many photos as possible about what we do as a Council.

Please write to us and comment on the user-friendliness or otherwise of this website.

Council ends 2016 on even keel

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2016 has been a most momentous year for the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council. It joined the International Association of Medical and Regulatory Authorities. It re-entered the Association of Medical Councils of Africa and it achieved all its financial targets for the year.

2016 was also marked by an unusually high number of cases of alleged professional misconduct reported to the Council. Fourteen complaints in total were registered, of which nine were against doctors and five against dentists.  One dentist was suspended from the Register whilst five doctors and one dentist were reprimanded. Of those who were reprimanded fines (1) and/or mandatory training (2) in specific areas of health care were added to their sanctions.

Although this does not necessarily mean a major downturn in the quality of medical or dental care in Seychelles, it does mean a greater consciousness on the part of the public of the role the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council can playing to improve medical and dental practice in Seychelles.

In 2016, the Council also put a lot of emphasis on promoting person-centered care and joined the Ministry of Health and the other professional councils in organising major sensitisation events throughout the country. So much so that person-centerer care has now become the buzz word for health-policy makers.

The Annual Report of the Council will be published on this site soon.

English language proficiency of doctors and dentists under scrutiny as new council begins work

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For the first time in its 21-year history, the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council has appointed a senior medical practitioner to be its serving Registrar. The appointment was formalized at the first meeting of the new Council which took place yesterday, Thursday 26th November at Seychelles Hospital.

ENT Specialist, Dr Susan Fock Tave, Principal Medical Officer at Seychelles Hospital was appointed to fill the vacant post. She will serve alongside Dr. Bernard Valentin who was rapturously re-elected as Chairman.

The Registrar is a statutory position of major importance for the Council as the Registrar ensures the accuracy of the register and implements policy decisions of the Council. The post had so far, either remained vacant for a long time or occupied by administrative staff.

“The change will significantly raise the profile and rigour of the Registrar’s Office,” said Dr. Valentin.

At that meeting Health Minister, Mrs. Mitcy Larue and the newly re-elected Chairman vowed to make the improvement in the quality of  communication between the doctor (or dentist) and their patients, a prime objective of the oncoming biennium.

“Too many doctors in our health system cannot or do not communicate adequately with their patients and their colleagues,” they said. “Communication is the most important element of health care. Without communication care quality cannot be good!

The discussion on communication pivoted principally on the insufficient ability of some of the doctors in the health system, to speak English.

The Minister and the Chairman agreed that whatever needs to be done must be done to ensure that within the next two years all doctors and dentists who enter the local health service are fluent in at least one of the national languages.

They also pledged to do everything in their powers to replace the current Medical Practitioners and Dentists Act by a modern, fit for purpose legislation.

After the new members of the Council had heard the numerous successes and challenges of SMDC, they approved the general outline of its two-year plan and confidently committed to raise the Council to greater heights.

 

Health Minister appoints new members to the Council

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Mrs Mitcy Larue, the Health Minister has appointed the eleven new members of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council.

They are:

  1. Bernard Valentin – Doctor
  2. Velmurugan Chetty – Dentist
  3. Harold Pothin – Dentist
  4. Susan Fock Tave – Doctor
  5. Danny Elizabeth – Priest of the Anglican Church
  6. Winnie Low Wah – Doctor
  7. Joachim Bistoquet – Doctor
  8. Valentina Seth – Doctor
  9. Derick Samsoodin – Dentist
  10. Josie Chetty – Pharmacist
  11. Victor Pool – Lawyer

Doctors and Dentists vote in their choices for Council membership

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Young Dr Winnie Low-Wah wrote a paragraph of local medical history on Friday 16th October 2015, as she became one of the youngest doctors ever to be voted to serve on the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council, a body usually composed almost exclusively of seasoned members of the profession.

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Dr Winnie Low-Wah

“I vow to do my best despite my inexperience,” she stated to the group of doctors who had votrd her in.

It had been apparent for some days that the young doctors (below 35 years) who are slowly becoming the bulk of the medical and dental profession and a force to reckon with, wanted one of their own to be their voice on the Council.  And they did not disappoint.

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Young doctors at Seychelles Hospital – increasingly the engine of the health system.

52 doctors and 20 dentists in total turned up for the elections that were organized with the highest degree of professionalism.

The following doctors and dentists were nominated by elections to serve on the next Council.

Doctors

Dr Valentina Seth – Private Sector Paediatrician
Dr Joachim Bistoquet – Radiologist at Seychelles Hospital
Dr Winnie Low-Wah – General Practitioner, doing the final semester of her internship

Dentists

Dr Velmurugan Chetty – Maxillofacial Surgeon at Seychelles Hospital

Dr Dereck Samsoodin – Private Sector Dentist

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Dr Samsoodin

The Term of Office of the current members of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council ends on the 22nd November 2015.

The 11 Members of the Council, including the five nominated today, are formally appointed to the Council by the Minister responsible for health.


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Health Care Ethics draw packed amphitheatre to two day seminar

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Over 123 local doctors, dentists and other health care professionals from the private and public health sectors attended a two day seminar on Health Care Ethics on Friday 10th and Saturday 11th July at the Seychelles Institute of Teacher Education.

For the first time ever, the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council teamed up with the World Medical Association to organize this world class educational event in Seychelles.

Professors Vivienne Nathanson from Durham University, United Kingdom and Amaboo Dhai from the University of Witwatersrand, South Africa  facilitated the event. Both academics are members of the World Medical Association and world leaders in the field of health care ethics.

“Ethics is the discipline of morality,” says Dr Bernard Valentin, Chief Medical Officer and Chairman of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council.

“It is the moral compass for members of the health care professions. Ethics teach us to remain faithful to the rules and standards of our professions,” he added.

The seminar was part of the programme of continuous professional development of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Council, the legal regulator of medical and dental practice in Seychelles.

At a time that the Seychelles health services are brimming with complaints of poor care quality and absence of patient-centred care,  the seminar was expected to contribute to bringing health care professionals back to the fundamentals of their trade.

At the launch of the seminar on Friday 10th, the Minister for Health, Mrs Mitcy Larue delivered a speech in which she reminded health care workers how ethics must continue to shore the foundations of their practices…..

While in Seychelles Professors Nathanson and Dhai met with members of the Seychelles Medical and Dental Association and other key players in the medical and dental profession in Seychelles.