MAPUTO, Almost half the graduates from medical faculties of Mozambican universities are unable to practise as doctors because they fail the examination set by the Order of Doctors (OMM), the country’s professional body for doctors, according to a report in the independent daily, O Pais.

In order to become a recognized doctor in Mozambique, it is not enough to pass a university course. The candidate must also be certified by the Order of Doctors and so far, of the 241 people hoping to become doctors or dentists who took the test, only 128 or 53.1 per cent passed.

The largest contingent was the 84 graduates from the medical faculty at the country’s oldest institution of higher learning, the Eduardo Mondlane University (UEM), and 55 of them (65.5 per cent) passed the certification examination, while 29 failed.

For other universities, the situation was much worse. At Lurio University, 24 out of 30 medical graduates failed (but 14 out of 19 would-be dentists passed). At Zambezi University, 19 out of 30 medical graduates failed.

Mozambicans trained as doctors abroad must also take the certification exam. There were 23 of these candidates, and 16 of them (almost 70 per cent) passed.

Commenting on the results, the chairperson of the Order, Eugenio Zacarias, said the high failure rate could reflect the poor quality of medical training.

We know there are many faculties without the ideal conditions for training doctors, which is an area with its own specific nature. But we have no way of intervening, since we don’t participate in licensing these institutions, he added.