Pioneering virtual otolaryngology specialist examinations in South Africa in the COVID-19 and post-COVID-19 era

Curr Opin Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2021 Mar 17. doi: 10.1097/MOO.0000000000000711. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: South Africa, and the African continent, have a shortage of ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialists. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic not only had an adverse impact on specialist training, but also impacted the ability of trainees to undertake the final examinations in order to qualify as ENT specialists.

RECENT FINDINGS: The response to the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the postponement of the final examination of the Fellowship of the College of Otorhinolaryngologists of South Africa (FCORL (SA)). A virtual clinical examination was held via videoconferencing to assess clinical judgement, insight, reasoning and decision making.

SUMMARY: The virtual clinical assessment allowed trainees to undertake the final examination despite the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring that they could be added to the limited number of specialists in South Africa and the African continent.

PMID:33741823 | DOI:10.1097/MOO.0000000000000711