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MrC
03-15-2006, 07:12 AM
I’m a med student at a genuine British school and I must admit that regardless of the charter issues, the lack of eternal oversight (according to the BBC report) ensuring the quality of education is incredibly worrying.

It seems all the discussions here focuses on charter issues, but not on the lack of objective evidence demonstrating the quality of education at medical schools run as a business. I know I certainly wouldn’t want to be treated by a graduate of a medical school that issues degrees without any objective assessment to assure the graduate has met a competent standard, regardless of whether their medical school was charted in America or Africa.

I do accept, as mentioned previously, that the current St. Chris situation could cause a political response, however not due to media hype or precedent it would set but rather the public want to ensure the doctors treating them are competent and standardised testing such as PLAB or USMLE cannot be relied upon to test total competency.

CorporateRaider
03-15-2006, 07:31 AM
Dear Mr. C:

Thank you for your insight.

Speaking for the Corporate Raider:

So far the academic merits or lack of them have not come into question. It would be difficult (impossible?) in a forum like this to hash such issues (academic oversight) because such issues are handled by the administration of St. Christopher's and not by the students.

If there is any academic oversight and to what degree there is academic oversight and by whom is that academic oversight conducted.....the world may never know.

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03-15-2006, 07:33 AM
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03-15-2006, 07:36 AM
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CorporateRaider
03-15-2006, 07:49 AM
That is the point. How can we discuss something we don't have hard data available on?

Rumor has it that St. Christopher's students do very well on their exams.

MrC
03-15-2006, 08:08 AM
I do see the points mentioned above and I also thank you for a standard of civility far higher than is typical of this forum, lets hope this thread remains so.

I completely agree that government accreditation is not the optimal method of quality of assurance and nor can it be relied upon fully, but in the absence of anything else it is preferable to nothing. Perhaps an initiative such as the international virtual medical schools curriculum could prove a better starting point to objectively assess the standard of education at different schools around the world using a universal objective measure.

Being a bit of a lefty politically (note: for the ultra right wing, not a communist LOL) I’m not a fan of privatising education but I accept under the American model where you already have to pay for education it is inevitable.

The problem with private industry is that there is a responsibility to the shareholder and as many people going off shore are perhaps looking for a short cut to becoming a doctor there is also the risk that crooks maybe willing to exploit them by providing a cheaper but also inferior education.

If there is a high standard of quality assurance then private education would definitely improve efficiency and choice, but in the absence of objective quality assurance it could be argued that competition will only cause cutting of corners by the unscrupulous business people out there.

The lack of evidence should cause us to discuss the absence of objective quality assurance.

Arguably a trained monkey can pass standardised testing. I am passing no comment on whether St. Chris education is deficient, it could be superior to Oxford or Harvard but there is no evidence to say if it is either way which is my point. Whether students do well on internal exams or USMLE is neither here nor there.

pruritis_ani
03-15-2006, 08:31 AM
I think "the point" from a student's perspective is that they want to graduate with a degree that is valid in the states. That appears to have been the question all along. St Chris tried a brilliant new model, which was untested and a risk. It does appear as though the gamble is having some serious issues, however.

Your points are valid, but I don't think a lot of us pick schools based on the quality of education. These offshore products are a means to an end, and things being what they are, we just want good, valuable results of our product. Since this is a student site, people will obviously focus on the student's concerns, which are far more about licensing than the quality and oversight of the education.

MrC
03-15-2006, 08:48 AM
I accept your points, however students and doctors can also be patients.

A person who desires to become a doctor without regard for the standard of care they will be able to offer their future patient is reckless to the say the least.

Perhaps the most important issue surrounding the current St Chris situation is the spotlight it has cast on the off shore medical industry. Should there be a political response to this situations the issues of quality assurance is likely to the central issue. I would therefore argue that this issue is of paramount importance to current and future students.

In an age of ever increasing litigation will employers and licensing authorities be prepared to accept the potential vicarious liabillity issues raised by employing doctors with potentially dubious or even inadequate education?

azskeptic
03-15-2006, 08:56 AM
I accept your points, however students and doctors can also be patients.

A person who desires to become a doctor without regard for the standard of care they will be able to offer their future patient is reckless to the say the least.

Perhaps the most important issue surrounding the current St Chris situation is the spotlight it has cast on the off shore medical industry. Should there be a political response to this situations the issues of quality assurance is likely to the central issue. I would therefore argue that this issue is of paramount importance to current and future students.

In an age of ever increasing litigation will employers and licensing authorities be prepared to accept the potential vicarious liabillity issues raised by employing doctors with potentially dubious or even inadequate education? I shall be in the UK next week and intend to see what the fallout of this all is for offshore med education indeed. It was time for the spotlight to be lit though.

empathy
03-15-2006, 09:29 AM
Another thing students should consider is that it is now illegal in 2 states to use a degree from an unaccredited medical college like St. Chris. Other states are considering this option because it has just become too costly to investigate these schools and their students on a case by case basis. The government is already encouraging hospitals to use a list provided to them which only includes accredited colleges. The medical school business model will soon be a thing of the past at least in the US and UK. Students who have degrees from St. Chris can always go to their country of charter to work…goodbye US…hello Senegal!

teratos
03-15-2006, 09:57 AM
Accredited by whom? SC is in the Faimer database, and has a charter. Of course, some of those issues are up in the air at the moment, however if they are sorted out, I'm not sure what other "accreditation would be needed. Can you elaborate? G

empathy
03-15-2006, 10:03 AM
has St. Chris listed as unaccredited. St. Chris isn't recognized by anyone as a medical college. Also as far as the US government is concerned St. Chris is not accredited. Call the US Dept of Education for more info. regarding accredited and non-accredited medical colleges.

MrC
03-15-2006, 10:07 AM
Is St. Chris actually unaccredited? I’m not supporting the school but I don’t think that the presence or absence of a charter has been resolved as of yet. Due the points I have raised already I wouldn’t attend St. Chris and doubt I would choose one of their graduates to be my doctor however I think we need to careful when giving “facts” in our posts.

I also don’t think there is a case for saying the presence of medical school businesses is likely to end soon. Medical education is an expensive affair and consequently has been attractive to entrepreneurs to try and fill a gap in the market. Perhaps some time financial motivation has led to low standards though this isn’t inevitably so.

With proper oversight I can’t think of any logical arguments which expressly prohibit a medical school making a profit for shareholders though perhaps a few ethical ones.

If we want our voice to be heard I think people may wish to consider rational arguments and express facts with supporting evidence or make it clear we are expressing a personal opinion.

teratos
03-15-2006, 10:07 AM
has St. Chris listed as unaccredited. St. Chris isn't recognized by anyone as a medical college. Also as far as the US government is concerned St. Chris is not accredited. Call the US Dept of Education for more info. regarding accredited and non-accredited medical colleges.

Oregon can be tough. The question is, who would accredit them? WHo has accredited AUC, Ross, SGU, for example, that makes them acceptable. CA is the obvious answer, but that is only applicable in CA and a handful of other states. Who needs to accredit SC? G

empathy
03-15-2006, 10:23 AM
I'll send you the links later tonight that the hospital hr offices are to use prior to hiring. They'll give you a better understanding. Also visit the Oregon site. They have lots of info on how they determine whether or not a college is accredited or not.

teratos
03-15-2006, 10:27 AM
Thanks........................

jpryor
03-15-2006, 10:28 AM
IAlso visit the Oregon site. They have lots of info on how they determine whether or not a college is accredited or not.

LOL...yeah, like using somebody like Azskeptic as a source on foreign medical schools. Doesn't do much for their credibility...which even their own Attorney General had to take issue with.

Borgy
03-15-2006, 10:43 AM
I’m a med student at a genuine British school and I must admit that regardless of the charter issues, the lack of eternal oversight (according to the BBC report) ensuring the quality of education is incredibly worrying.

It seems all the discussions here focuses on charter issues, but not on the lack of objective evidence demonstrating the quality of education at medical schools run as a business. I know I certainly wouldn’t want to be treated by a graduate of a medical school that issues degrees without any objective assessment to assure the graduate has met a competent standard, regardless of whether their medical school was charted in America or Africa.

I do accept, as mentioned previously, that the current St. Chris situation could cause a political response, however not due to media hype or precedent it would set but rather the public want to ensure the doctors treating them are competent and standardised testing such as PLAB or USMLE cannot be relied upon to test total competency.
What worries me is that you are so willing to believe in the media. In the USA usually we question things and the government tends to stay out. If they want a war then it should be setteled in the court room/impartial not by a partial government agency. I hope this issue drags out in the court room.. Atleast St. Chris will be able to tell their presepective and show facts and evidence.
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azskeptic
03-15-2006, 10:47 AM
LOL...yeah, like using somebody like Azskeptic as a source on foreign medical schools. Doesn't do much for their credibility...which even their own Attorney General had to take issue with. suppose we'll see what the reality is here shortly.

jpryor
03-15-2006, 11:01 AM
What crystal ball are you using, Az?

MrC
03-15-2006, 11:12 AM
What worries me is that you are so willing to believe in the media. In the USA usually we question things and the government tends to stay out. If they want a war then it should be setteled in the court room/impartial not by a partial government agency. I hope this issue drags out in the court room.. Atleast St. Chris will be able to tell thier presepective and show facts and evidence.
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I am perfectly prepared to accept that the BBC report is incorrect when shown evidence to prove it, though usually I find the BBC to be a fairly reliable source of information.

If the BBC report was unfair or contained false information i'm sure the regulator (OFCOM) will investigate and provide an appropiate report. To the best of my knowledge, though I stand to be corrected, there hasn't been an offical denial or press release from St. Chris and therfore there is no information to rebut the claims of the BBC.

Perhaps St. Chris will have their day in court and be able to make their case, or perhaps they do not have a case. I am only an external observer and therfore can only go on the information in the public domain.

The general medical council plays an important role in protecting the public and therefore I would prefer they ensure their investigation was very detailed and that they are totally satisfied of the competence of doctors applying for registration.

Any doctor should understand that patient saftey is the most important concern.

azskeptic
03-15-2006, 11:13 AM
What crystal ball are you using, Az?Well, reports are pretty good that SC students will see a resolution shortly. Those on the know,which apparently you aren't, know what is happening. Seek them out and they'll tell you. Warmer locations for many are already being arranged by some students per conversations I've had with those in the know.

jpryor
03-15-2006, 11:20 AM
LOL...yeah, I'm aware that you're in contact with students...kind of a secure source of information, like the GMC final decision and updated web page information, huh? Well, that's not as bad as yellow journalism, but still, on par for our expectations of you. You have managed to create quite a reputation for yourself in that regard.

azskeptic
03-15-2006, 11:22 AM
LOL...yeah, I'm aware that you're in contact with students...kind of a secure source of information, like the GMC final decision and updated web page information, huh? Well, that's not as bad as yellow journalism, but still, on par for our expectations of you. You have managed to create quite a reputation for yourself in that regard. I defer to your great wisdom and contacts. Lets see how well your predictions go.







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