College of Medicine and Health Science & Referral Hospital

College of Medicine and Health Sciences was established in 2009 G.C, and the 2010 G.C, accepted health sciences students in three programs, namely, Public Health (73 students), Pharmacy (55 students), and Nursing (56 students) with only six (6) instructors at that time. In March 2011 G.C, the college launched New Innovative Medical Education Initiative (NIMEI) program and accepted 75 students to train for a Bachelor’s degree in Doctor of Medicine.


College of Medicine and Health Sciences of Ambo University has gone through a series of transformations since its establishment. In the last decade, the college has witnessed tremendous expansion in terms of field of study. The college, apart from undergraduate programs, has been highly engaged in the expansion and diversification of graduate programs. Currently, the college is running different undergraduate programs under 7 departments: Medicine, Pharmacy, Nursing, Anesthesia, Midwifery, Medical Laboratory Sciences, and Public Health. Additionally, 12 post-graduate programs including specialty programs in Internal Medicine, General Surgery, Pediatrics and Child Health, & Obstetrics and Gynecology, Master of Science in Medical Microbiology, Master of Science in Maternity & Reproductive Health,  Master of Science in Adult Health Nursing, Master of Public Health in Nutrition, Master of General Public Health, Master of Public Health in Epidemiology, Master of Public Health in Reproductive Health, and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Medical Microbiology are being actively run under the college.


In its goal to assure the accessibility and equitability of Medicine and Health Sciences education, the college is striving to increase the number of post-graduate programs by opening specialty programs in Orthopedics, Master of Public Health in Health Service Management, Master of Science in Medicinal Chemistry, Master of Science in Clinical Pharmacy, Master of Science in Medical Physiology, Master of Science in Medical Biochemistry, Master of Science in Pharmaceutics,  Master of Science in Pharmaceutical analysis, and Ph.D. in Public Health.


To this date (April 2023), the college has 225 on-duty academic staff, among which more than 100 are with the rank of Assistant Professor and above. Sixty percent of them own a second degree (MSc/MPH/Specialty) and above. Besides, 76 academic staffs are on-study leave. Similarly, the college has been developing its infrastructure capacity in the last decade. In addition to the Teaching Referral Hospital, the college has skill development laboratories and Biomedical Science laboratories (Anatomy, Biochemistry, Pharmacy, and Medical laboratory science).


In advance, the college is fulfilling its responsibility in creating a healthy and productive society. Accordingly, the college has established a COVID-19 testing laboratory which will have a crucial contribution to tackling the spread of COVID-19 in the public. The laboratory can also be used for molecular biology-related research activities.


The college has been actively involved in research and community services of health and health-related priority areas. A bunch of research findings has been communicated to the local and international communities through publication in peer-reviewed and reputable journals. Several research findings have been used to address the real problems of the surrounding community. Furthermore, the college is working hard to increase the number, scope, and quality of research and community services. Additionally, intending to excel in research, the college has been working hard to establish the Oda Bisil Demographic Surveillance and Health Research Center.

The community-based education (CBE) activities are the peculiar nature of the college, among colleges/campuses of the university. Through the CBE, both undergraduate and graduate students of the college assess and understand the health problems of the surrounding community. They prioritize and prepare an action plan on how to solve selected top-priority health problems of the community. The students then mobilize resources from the community and solve the problems with community members. Through the CBE, students learn the culture and language of the surrounding community, promote Ambo University, and tangibly solve health-related problems in society. The team training program (TTP) and the developmental team training program (DTTP) are the famous components of CBE that have been solving the surrounding community’s health problems and linking the university with the community.


The college established an In-service training center in 2014, following the call of the Ministry of Health (MOH) for our university to participate in the process of standardizing and institutionalizing in-service pieces of training provided to the health workforce in the country. Since its establishment, the training center has made significant improvements and contributed to the process of standardizing and institutionalizing in-service training in the country and has received recognition for its contribution in this regard from MOH. It has been providing various in-service pieces of training in collaboration with the Oromia Regional Health Bureau and other partners for health workforce practicing in the region and now has become one of the potential training centers that are expected to contribute to the implementation of the CPD program intended for health professionals in the country.


Our college has received accreditation to work as a CPD provider. With its rich experience as an In-service training center for years and well-experienced human resources in the college and the Referral Hospital, our CPD provider has provided training, mostly face-to-face, for thousands of health professionals on different health and health-related activities. In addition to face-to-face training, the CPD center is also working on expanding its CPD activities by including different modalities of CPD courses such as e-courses and category II CPD activities that include different professional development activities other than formal training. In addition to the CPD provider status, our college has received the certificate of accreditation in October 2020 to work as a CPD accreditor. Since then, our CPD accreditation office has been performing CPD accreditation activities. It has assessed and accredited CPD centers. In addition, it is working on CPD course assessment and accreditation. Hence, our CPD accreditation office accepts requests for accreditation for CPD provider status and CPD courses. 


The college has been providing clinical services at its referral hospital as of May 2016 G.C. The hospital initially started providing clinical services mainly as inpatient clinical services of Ambo General Hospital in the internal medicine and pediatrics departments because Ambo General Hospital above mentioned wards was under renovation. In May 2017, surgery and gynecology/obstetric clinical services were started as inpatient services, and the operation of patients was started. Though outpatient departments were opened they were underutilized due to incomplete infrastructure (road, transport, and public awareness). The hospital became fully and independently functional in July 2018, when all clinical services (OPD, inpatient, and emergency services) with clinical teachings at the hospital were fully started in the four major departments (internal medicine, surgery, pediatrics, and Gynecology and obstetrics).


The hospital is providing services for 3.5 million residents of West Shoa, South West Shoa, and neighboring East Wollega Zones having 186 beds, 354 healthcare professionals (non-academician), 86 doctors (academicians), and 384 administrative workers. The hospital services are organized under the following units/departments:

  • Outpatient department
  • Inpatient department
  • Emergency department
  • Adult ICU
  • Pediatric ICU
  • Neonatal ICU
  • Medical laboratory
  • Pharmacy
  • TB
  • ART
  • OR

The following services are being provided by the hospital:

  • Internal medicine department
  • Surgery department
  • Pediatrics and child health department
  • Gynecology & obstetrics department
  • Ophthalmology unit
  • Dentistry department
  • Dermatology unit
  • Radiology unit
  • Pathology unit
  • Emergency and critical care unit
  • Maxillofacial surgery unit
  • Oncology unit
  • Cardiology services
  • Gastroenterology services
  • Neurology services


The college has been collaboratively working with international universities including VID Specialized University (Norway) and Dibrugarh University (India), and national universities/colleges such as Addis Ababa University, Jimma University, Saint Paul Hospital & Millennium Medical College, and Armour Hansen Research Institute (AHRI). Jhpiego Ethiopia has been our long-lasting partner and collaborator organization, particularly on educational quality audit and improvement activities. The college has also been working with Amref Health Africa, ICAP Ethiopia, and professional associations including EMA, EMWA, ENA, EMLA, and others. Government organizations including MOE, MOH, EPHI, FDA, EPSA, ORHB, Zonal, and Woreda Health offices are our key stakeholders. Moreover, the college also appreciates any help rendered and is ready to work with any interested individual, institution, or organization.