Dear Colleague
We extend a warm invitation to join us for the 2019 UCT Paediatric Refresher Course. We hope to fulfil all your expectations in this exciting programme from the divisions of Neonatology, Paediatric Cardiology and Emergency and Ambulatory Paediatrics.

Our invited speakers are leaders in their fields who bring us their knowledge, reflections and updates and, in the spirit of shared expertise, we invite you to be participants in the discussions, workshops and lectures. In addition, for the first time ever, the three disciplines will be combining to bring you an interactive, hands-on marketplace workshop with stations covering broad aspects of paediatric and neonatal emergency and ambulatory care.

Neonatal and child survival are particular challenges in the current South African context with about 40% of the South African population under the age of 15. Infants and children are not tiny adults. It is therefore important to recognise that delayed presentations, inadequate care or non-recognition of potentially reversible paediatric emergency conditions, neonatal and cardiac conditions are all significant contributors to childhood morbidity and mortality. While neonatal illnesses, diarrhoea, pneumonia, HIV/AIDS and malnutrition are the main and mostly preventable contributors to under-five deaths, critical paediatric cardiac conditions are hidden within the mortality figures frequently masquerading as something else. South Africa is also struggling to reduce the high mortality of hospitalised children and newborns who die within the first 24 hours of presentation to a healthcare facility.

Equitable access to emergency and basic health care for children is enshrined in our Constitution. We hope to provide you with some of the skills to negotiate these complex yet vital fields.

We look forward to seeing you in Cape Town in February!

Prof John Lawrenson, Dr Niki van Niekerk, Dr George Comitis, Dr Yaseen Joolay, Dr Lloyd Tooke, Dr Heloise Buys

2019 Paediatric Refresher Course Organising Committee

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