7 Interesting Benefits Of Housemanship You Need To Understand


This blog post talks about the key benefits of housemanship.


Housemanship is a compulsory one year training program for new medical graduates. These medics are also called House Officers or Interns.

The aim of Housemanship is to provide a transition between medical school teachings to a practical work as a doctor in a hospital setting.

It is where new medical graduates develop the basic skills and the knowledge they need in order to take care of their patients. These skills cannot be gotten from just theoretical classes alone.

During the housemanship, the new doctors work under the supervision of other senior colleagues and together with them, take care of the patients, conduct some procedures as well as manage emergencies.

There are some responsibilities that they perform and some expectations from them too.

In this blog post, we are going to be looking at seven key benefits of the Housemanship program and why every new doctor or medical graduate should embrace this program with open arms in order to maximize the benefits.

How Long Is Housemanship In Nigeria?

The housemanship programme in Nigeria is designed to be a 12-month unbroken period of training, in which the new doctors pass through four specialties, each for a period of three months.

The specialties are Paediatrics, Medicine, Surgery as well as Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Is Housemanship and Residency The Same?

The housemanship and residency training are two unique but different periods in the life of a medical doctor.

Housemanship is the period when a newly qualified medical doctor learns the ropes and the basics of medical practice. The house officer is considered as a “general doctor”.

After successfully completing your medical school MBBS examinations and being inducted as a doctor, you are expected to proceed for your housemanship.

During residency, a medical doctor trains to be a specialist in a particular area of specialty.

What Happens After Housemanship In Nigeria?

After successfully completing the housemanship programme in Nigeria, the doctor is expected to proceed for the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC). This is a one-year service to the nation during whivh he doctor is posted to a hospital or health centre to apply his knowledge and skills in patient care.

7 Key Benefits of Housemanship Programme

We now go ahead to explain the major benefits you stand to gain by embarking on the housemanship programme. the benefits are as follows:

1) Housemanship helps in building clinical competence and confidence.

When a medical student newly graduates as a doctor, there are a lot of expectations for him by the society. Many people are already called doctors while they are still in medical school, and people bring a lot of medical complaints to them, expecting them to provide solutions to most, if not all of these complaints

During the Housemanship program, the House officer is able to develop confidence as a doctor.

They also build clinical skills.

They are able to apply the knowledge they have gained during the academic training program to real world cases in the wards and clinic.

They develop this confidence when they work under the supervision of experienced physicians and other healthcare professionals in their units. they get corrected when they make mistakes. They are also properly guided by these senior colleagues.

The Consultant is the most senior person in the managing unit, followed by the Fellows and Senior Registrars, followed by the Registrars and finally the House officers.

So the house officer has a long line of senior colleagues from which he can learn, build skills, and develop himself so that after the program, or even before leaving the program, he can be able to handle most cases that come his way and know what to do and to be confident in the decisions he takes.

This helps in building professional confidence and confidence and competence.

2) It leads to professional and career advancement.

When somebody starts his Housemanship, he is able to build clinical skills and gain a lot of confidence.

Not only that, a person that is dedicated to the Housemanship training program is able to gain the experience from other health care professionals who have worked in the field for some time.

The House officer is exposed to doctors, nurses, and other health care workers, as well as people fro other organizations that work with the hospital in some areas. These contacts provide an opportunity for networking.

This can also help the new doctor beyond the Housemanship program. A doctor may need a recommendation letter for something he wants to pursue. He may also need some job in future, and he may also need to collaborate in one area or the other with others.

The housemanship period provides an opportunity that exposes him to a wide range of people in the health care field with whom he can network with at the moment and in future. If he can harness his work skills and collaboration skills, he will be able to do well subsequently.

3) Housemanship provides an opportunity for practical hands on experience.

When you’re a medical student, you learn many things. There are some things you can never be allowed to practice as a student. This is because the person has not been licensed to do so, and at that time of training, he is not considered a doctor.

However, during Housemanship, the opportunities abound. The person is now a doctor and he’s being looked as such by his colleagues. A House officer will be allowed to perform procedures or even assist in others that he cannot be allowed to perform alone.

For those who are enterprising, they can learn more. This is because many senior doctors like working with and teaching those that are eager to apply themselves. The more you’re able to apply yourself, the more your seniors will love to teach you and the faster you’ll be able to develop skills.

These skills can be helpful in a number of situations. First and foremost, after the House job, you have to go for NYSC. Many of the skills you pick during the Housemanship here can be life saving during the NYSC year.

4) Housemanship Helps In Development of Professional Ethics.

During Housemanship, you are exposed to how things work. You see how your senior colleagues handle patients.

You also learn the things to do and not to do.

You’re able to learn how to effectively handle a patient and even the patients relative in the most ethical manner.

You may also experience when a patient or patient’s relatives are unsatisfied with the care given by the patient and they have conflict with the managing unit.

This can escalate if not well handled.

As a house officer, you’re able to see your seniors handle such situations and even handle difficult patients too. At the end of the day, you’re able to know the boundary lines you should not cross in the management of patients, as well as what to do in difficult times

You also know the responsibilities you have towards your patients.

At the same time, you know the rights and expectations you have of your patients towards you.

This knowledge is essential because when you leave the Housemanship program and go for your Youth service or when you start practicing on your own, you may be exposed to similar situations and you already know what to do.

5) Housemanship enhances communication skills

Effective communication is very necessary as a medical doctor. Firstly, it helps you to manage your patients effectively and carry them along in the management process.

Secondly, it helps you to collaborate with your colleagues and other healthcare professionals for effective patient outcome.

During the Housemanship, you are exposed to different kinds of patients with different backgrounds, personalities and medical conditions. This helps you quickly to develop communication skills to meet each patient’s needs.

You learn how to listen, ask questions, be empathetic, and also to give information in a clear manner.

Housemanship also helps you to provide you an opportunity to work as a team with other health professionals. Working with a team exposes you to conflict, decision making and all that.

These are the skills that you need in order to ensure a quality health care system. You are so exposed to people from different cultures, backgrounds and different approaches to patients management.

6) Housemanship helps you develop time management skills.

During your house job year, you will learn how to manage your time effectively. Your unit may probably have a lot of patients and you may have few house officers in the unit. In some cases, you may even be the only one. You have to take care of all of them. You have to do all rounds for your patients and carry out the post round instructions of your senior colleagues.

You have to take patients vital signs in some cases or cross check with the ones that have been taken by nurses. You have to ensure that their drugs are up to date and being given as prescribed. You have to prepare patients for surgery.

You have to make sure they have everything needed and they’ve done all the tests and they’ve been reviewed by the necessary teams before the surgery. These are some of the things you need to do.

You also need to come early to work in order to take care of these things before your other colleagues come in.

During House job your schedule is packed.

When you apply yourself effectively, you’re able to develop organizational and time management skills. You’re able to prioritize what to do in order to meet the deadlines.

You’re also able to pick up all the skills you need in order to ensure that the health facility works well.

7) Housemanship provides an opportunity for further learning.

Learning does not end after graduating from medical school.

When you become a house officer, you are exposed to more learning in even greater dimension.

You will have teams to work with.

When you do House job, your unit or department may have daily or weekly reviews or meetings, regular case presentations, discussions, seminars and so on.

This provides you with an opportunity to learn. You may also be required to present at some of these programs. When you present, you gain more confidence and you’re able to learn at a higher level.

At the end of the day, makes you a better medical doctor.

Wrapping Up

Housemanship is a very interesting year, which marks a swift transition from being a medical student to being a full fledged medical doctor. It comes with responsibilities and expectations from patients and as well as from your colleagues.

The benefits of this program are far too numerous and is what every new medical graduate should really be looking forward to.

Let us know what your Housemanship experiences have been. If you have not yet gone for Housemanship, how do you feel knowing that you soon do the Housemanship program?


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