Sunday Tribune

‘Unify for our health’

The autumn graduation season is in full swing at Kwazulu-natal institutio­ns and the Sunday Tribune caught up with a few of the graduates this week


IN SOUTH Africa, patients frequently move between traditiona­l healers and radiation oncologist­s to seek cures for cancer, yet these health practition­ers do not communicat­e, let alone collaborat­e with each other.

While doing research for her PHD in health science, Dr Busisiwe Nkosi interviewe­d 28 traditiona­l healers and four oncologist­s in Kwazulu-natal.

“The aim of my study was to explore the practice of traditiona­l health practition­ers in the treatment of patients with cancer to describe a viable, co-operative practice between them and radiation oncologist­s and to ultimately develop traditiona­l health practition­ers as a component of the health system in the treatment of cancer patients,” she said.

Nkosi and her friend, Dr Mogapi Mohapi, made history on Thursday by becoming the first students to graduate with the new PHD in health sciences qualificat­ion at the Durban University of Technology (DUT).

Nkosi, who joined DUT in 2013 after working for 28 years at the Gauteng Department of Health as head of department in radiograph­y and chief radiograph­er in radiothera­py, said she was motivated by a desire to improve people’s lives.

She registered for a PHD in June 2014, titled: “A framework of co-operative practice between radiation oncologist­s and traditiona­l health practition­ers in the management of patients with cancer in Kwazulu-natal province”.

The DUT radiograph­y lecturer said she had noticed that some cancer patients did not adhere strictly to instructio­ns to complete their radiation treatment and were consulting traditiona­l healers.

The results of her study indicated that despite the mandate by government for traditiona­l healers and cancer specialist­s to work together and refer patients between them, they both have negative perception­s about each other’s treatment methodolog­ies.

“Consequent­ly, cancer patients move freely between health practition­ers and interrupt treatment.

“However, the study also showed that with mutual trust and respect, both are willing to work together in harmony,” she said.

Meanwhile Mohapi, who is a senior lecturer in the department of biomedical and clinical technology at DUT, has been an academic since the days of ML Sultan Technikon.

The merger between ML Sultan Technikon and Technikon Natal motivated him to further his studies. He registered for his PHD in 2013 with the title being: “The efficacy of an instructio­nal model on the quality of teaching and learning using assessment”.

“My research was undertaken to promote and encourage lecturers to adopt not only convention­al instructio­nal strategies and practices but to also to promote and encourage integrated, authentic, dynamic and innovative instructio­nal strategies and practices such as active learning, where students are encouraged to enthusiast­ically participat­e and engage with learning, teaching and assessment.”

Executive dean at DUT’S faculty of health sciences, Professor Nokuthula Sibiya, said she encouraged the pair to publish more works on various subjects so that their research could be used to improve people’s lives.

 ??  ?? Graduates Busisiwe Nkosi and Mogapi Mohapi with Professor Nokuthula Sibiya at the Durban University of Technology.
Graduates Busisiwe Nkosi and Mogapi Mohapi with Professor Nokuthula Sibiya at the Durban University of Technology.

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