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van Wees, Sibylle Herzig, Sop, Maturin Desire Sop, Betsi, Emmanuel, Olongo, Silvere Antoine and Jennings, Michael (2021) 'The role of faith-based health professions schools in Cameroon’s health system.' Global Public Health, 16 (6). pp. 895-910.

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Faith-based health professions schools contribute to the training of staff in many Sub-Saharan African countries. Yet little is known about these actors, their role in the health system, potential comparative advantages and challenges faced. This is a qualitative study drawing on 24 qualitative interviews and 3 focus group discussions. Participants included faith-based health professions schools, staff at faith-based health professions schools, Ministry of Health officials and donors. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data. The findings reveal that understanding of faith-based health professions schools held by donors and the Ministry of Health rest on a set of assumptions rather than evidence-backed knowledge and that knowledge on key aspects is missing (not least on the market share of such actors). This suggests that collaboration with and oversight of these non-state schools is limited, raising questions about the balance of state regulation and control in the public-private mix for training health workers. Linked to this weak oversight, the findings also raise concerns over a number of problematic activities at these schools, unaccredited training programmes and the presence of missionary volunteers whose presence and actions are rarely interrogated.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Cameroon; Faith-based organisations; medical education;
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of Development Studies
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
ISSN: 17441706
Copyright Statement: © 2020 The Author(s). This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 07 Oct 2020 14:40

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