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Karolinska Institutet and Harvard in a unique training initiative


The healthcare services of the future will place heavy demands on medical universities and the education they provide. This is the starting point for a unique training initiative between Karolinska Institutet and Harvard Medical School for people in charge of quality assurance and medical course design in wide variety of countries.

The newly started “International Design Strategies for Medical Curricula Across the Continuum” leadership programme is the first of its kind ever, and is to be held at Karolinska Institutet in Solna between 7 and 12 May. It is also meant to be an opportunity for participants to meet and exchange views on international standards of medical education. Around 40 leading people from 18 higher education institutes in Europe, the USA, Latin America, Asia and Australia have been enrolled on the course.

“Globalisation and greater international collaboration put new demands on a common set of quality criteria and standards,” says Vivi-Anne Sundqvist, dean and chairman of Karolinska Institutet’s Board of Higher Education. “Harmonisation of medical education is especially important from an EU perspective. Ultimately it’s obviously a matter of patient safety and high quality healthcare provision.”

A recent trend amongst the world-leading medical universities over the past few years has been to open branches in Southeast Asia and elsewhere. Karolinska Institutet has invested in increasing the international exchange of students and research scientists in this way. Amongst the speakers on the course will be the heads of Duke’s new Medical School in Singapore and Cornell’s branch in Qatar. Attending the course will also be the president of the World Federation of Medical Education (WMFE), Dr Hans Karle.

“We’re seeing a trend towards adopting international quality criteria for medical courses in Sweden too,” says course director Jonas Nordquist. “At the start of 2005, for example, the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare submitted a proposal on target definitions for doctors’ residencies that was based on WMFE standards.”

The new leadership programme is being arranged by Karolinska Institutet’s Board of Higher Education and Harvard Medical International (Harvard Medical School) in an effort to promote international collaboration and leadership training in the medical field.

Katarina Sternudd | alfa
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