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View Full Version : MD not accepted by UK's GMC. Impending lawsuit against SMU. Looking for similar cases



DavesDad
04-01-2013, 08:27 AM
I graduated a couple of years ago from SMU and have been fighting to enter the GMC's Foundation Programme ever since. The problem that the GMC has with my MD from SMU is that more than 50% of my education was done outside of the country (In the US) that issued the degree (Cayman Islands), a violation of the SMU's rule, "​It must not have involved a programme of study where more than 50% of that study (compared to the standard duration of the qualification) has been undertaken outside the country that awarded the qualification." I took what I was instructed by SMU to take for my MD, only to have the GMC say what I was instructed to do was incorrect. Further, I have several emails from both the Director of the GMC on down directly stating that SMU had been previously warned what would happen should they graduate MDs in this fashion. I was then informed that I was not the only case in which this had happened.

My attorney asked me to reach out to other SMU graduates and see if anyone else had a similar problem and ask how it was, or if it was, resolved. My email address is stmatthewslawsuit at gmail or feel free to respond here so that it can be found by others in the same situation at a later date.

Thank you.

rokshana
04-01-2013, 08:44 AM
Not really sure what grounds you have...the GMC has had those requirements for many years...if you graduated only a couple of years ago, this was not new..smu ( or any foreign med school) is not responsible for making you eligible to be able to practice in any other country than the one it is chartered in...good luck though.

DavesDad
04-01-2013, 08:56 AM
No it was not new, but I took the courses required by SMU to graduate with my MD - which turned out to be incompatible for entrance into the Foundation Programme in the UK. The degree is supposed to be compatible with the GMC's requirements, they advertise it as so, and I did exactly what I was told by SMU to do to make sure it would be accepted.

sandyjay
04-03-2013, 11:01 AM
No it was not new, but I took the courses required by SMU to graduate with my MD - which turned out to be incompatible for entrance into the Foundation Programme in the UK. The degree is supposed to be compatible with the GMC's requirements, they advertise it as so, and I did exactly what I was told by SMU to do to make sure it would be accepted.
why don't you ask the many graduates from SMU who are now employed by the NHS how they got into it.? there are some who post on this site How did you not complete 50percent of your course in the Caymen Islands when the entire Basic Science course which is 50 percent of the curriculum can be completed in the CaymenIslands Were you given a choice of completing Basic Sciences outside the Caymen islands or are you a transfer student from another school who transferred credits from that school All the Best

sandyjay
04-03-2013, 11:21 AM
why don't you ask the many graduates from SMU who are now employed by the NHS how they got into it.? there are some who post on this site How did you not complete 50percent of your course in the Caymen Islands when the entire Basic Science course which is 50 percent of the curriculum can be completed in the CaymenIslands Were you given a choice of completing Basic Sciences outside the Caymen islands or are you a transfer student from another school who transferred credits from that school All the Best

I suggest that you contact the SMU UK Clinical Prof for further clarification His name is in the faculty lists in the SMU Catlogue /Handbook Good luck once again

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 06:39 AM
why don't you ask the many graduates from SMU who are now employed by the NHS how they got into it.? there are some who post on this site How did you not complete 50percent of your course in the Caymen Islands when the entire Basic Science course which is 50 percent of the curriculum can be completed in the CaymenIslands Were you given a choice of completing Basic Sciences outside the Caymen islands or are you a transfer student from another school who transferred credits from that school All the Best

Thank you for responding. I completed my entire degree at St. Matthews. We have talked at length to other graduates, St. Matthews, and the GMC. Unfortunately, the answer is always the same: St. Matthews messed up, your schedule had a couple classes too many in the US, and your MD is not does not match the criteria necessary for acceptance into the Foundation Programme. There is nothing anyone can do to fix the issue.

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 06:46 AM
We have been on contact with St. Matthews and they are fully aware of what has happened. They are also fully aware that the GMC has not only placed the blame for the mess up squarely at their feet, but that the GMC has informed us that they warned St. Matthews about this sort of situation several times. The GMC made if fairly clear that I was not the only student who is in this situation, which is why I'm here looking for others. If anyone else is or was in this situation, please respond to this post or email me at stmatthewslawsuit at gmail.

Thank you again for all of the responses.

49ers
04-05-2013, 07:49 AM
is the requirement exactly a minimum of 50%, or more than 50% (ie 51%+)? If I do exactly 2 years on the island where my medical school is located, and exactly 2 years in the US, does that meet the 50% requirement?

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 08:13 AM
The GMC's acceptable primary medical qualifications states, "It must not have involved a programme of study where more than 50% of that study (compared to the standard duration of the qualification) has been undertaken outside the country that awarded the qualification." St. Matthews messed up and had students taking more than 50% in the US. According to the GMC, this has happened several times and they have warned St. Matthews about this on several occasions. This is not something a student would reasonably be aware of, and St. Matthews has never publicly admitted to messing up. That is where the lawsuit comes into play and why I'm reaching out to others who are in a similar situation.

devildoc8404
04-05-2013, 10:05 AM
Just considering how this could happen, and I think it could be the traditional Carib "5th semester" (on US soil) that would tend to screw this up for people hoping to work in the UK. If you complete four semesters of pre-clinical class time at the mother ship, and four semesters (equivalent) of clinical rotations, then that 5th semester requirement in the States absolutely tips the balance away from the country where the school is located.

Again, I don´t know, I´m just thinking about this. I hope this works out for you somehow, DavesDad. What a mess...

medic300107
04-05-2013, 10:12 AM
The GMC's acceptable primary medical qualifications states, "It must not have involved a programme of study where more than 50% of that study (compared to the standard duration of the qualification) has been undertaken outside the country that awarded the qualification." St. Matthews messed up and had students taking more than 50% in the US. According to the GMC, this has happened several times and they have warned St. Matthews about this on several occasions. This is not something a student would reasonably be aware of, and St. Matthews has never publicly admitted to messing up. That is where the lawsuit comes into play and why I'm reaching out to others who are in a similar situation.

I would have to ask when did you graduate? You say a couple of years ago (which would be about 2), well SMU was officially banned by the UK for GMC since January 2011. I can't imagine there is anything you can do to change that if they banned not just your transcripts but all from your school. As of now no one who graduated SMU after Dec 2010 will ever get a license in UK. SMU does not advertise you will be able to practice in UK. They say 44 states in U.S. and many other countries.

Summer2013
04-05-2013, 10:20 AM
Can you go back to St.Matthews and do one more semester some kind of clinical training and tip 50% requirement and be done with it?

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 10:38 AM
Just considering how this could happen, and I think it could be the traditional Carib "5th semester" (on US soil) that would tend to screw this up for people hoping to work in the UK. If you complete four semesters of pre-clinical class time at the mother ship, and four semesters (equivalent) of clinical rotations, then that 5th semester requirement in the States absolutely tips the balance away from the country where the school is located.

Again, I don´t know, I´m just thinking about this. I hope this works out for you somehow, DavesDad. What a mess...

My attorney has warned me about getting into too many specifics, but you are right on the money. Eventually, St. Matthews has been warned several times by the GMC and, for whatever reason, has decided to go ahead and do it anyway, destroying several people's lives by making their MD completely incompatible with the basic entry criteria of the GMC.

It is not a good situation to be in.

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 10:52 AM
I would have to ask when did you graduate? You say a couple of years ago (which would be about 2), well SMU was officially banned by the UK for GMC since January 2011. I can't imagine there is anything you can do to change that if they banned not just your transcripts but all from your school. As of now no one who graduated SMU after Dec 2010 will ever get a license in UK. SMU does not advertise you will be able to practice in UK. They say 44 states in U.S. and many other countries.

Because of the nature of the case, I've been warned by my attorney to give out too many specifics. And while SMU is no longer of the approved list of schools, they are still on the list of "Qualifications which may be acceptable." Furthermore, St. Matthews still advertises on their website, "Clinical rotations are offered in high quality teaching hospitals throughout the United States and England."

I was told specifically by the GMC that the only reason for my denial was that I did not meet the 50/50 rule due to an ongoing issue St. Matthews is having. If I had to guess, the reason for St. Matthews’s movement on to the "may be acceptable" list is at least partially because of their issues with graduating students incompatible with the basic criteria for entrance into the Foundation Programme. What makes me quite upset is that they knowingly did so and chose not to inform any of us of that our degree would not be accepted in the UK.

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 10:57 AM
Sorry for the double post. I do not know how to delete this one.

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 10:58 AM
Can you go back to St.Matthews and do one more semester some kind of clinical training and tip 50% requirement and be done with it?

That was actually the first question I asked. The answer was unfortunately, no. The degree is done, so there is no going back and taking extra classes to shift the balance back to 50/50.

Every representative that either my attorney or I have spoken with at the GMC has been extremely sympathetic and have gone to great lengths to help us through every possible option. In the end, all sides realized that there is nothing that can be done to make up for St. Matthews error.

tampanian
04-05-2013, 12:19 PM
...well SMU was officially banned by the UK for GMC since January 2011. I can't imagine there is anything you can do to change that if they banned not just your transcripts but all from your school. As of now no one who graduated SMU after Dec 2010 will ever get a license in UK.
this^ is completely inaccurate.

the gmc has smu (cayman islands) listed in the category of "Overseas medical qualifications which may be accepted by the GMC (http://www.gmc-uk.org/doctors/registration_applications/14389.asp)", which means applicants are on a case-by-case basis. (for what it's worth, there are at least a few grads that i know of that have gotten licenses there relatively recently.)

however, those who studied at the belize campus (which was in operation until the school moved to grand cayman in 2002) are not eligible for licensure, as credits earned there would fall under "Overseas medical qualifications not accepted by the GMC (http://www.gmc-uk.org/doctors/registration_applications/14390.asp)".

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 12:29 PM
this^ is completely inaccurate.

the gmc has smu (cayman islands) listed in the category of Overseas medical qualifications which may be accepted by the GMC", which means applicants are on a case-by-case basis. (for what it's worth, there are at least a few grads that i know of that have gotten licenses there relatively recently.)

however, those who studied at the belize campus (which was in operation until the school moved to grand cayman in 2002) are not eligible for licensure, as credits earned there would fall under "Overseas medical qualifications not accepted by the GMC".

Thank you for the much better clarification than the one that I wrote.

I can say that I did not graduate from the Belize campus. The issues that are specific to my case have all happened since SMU moved to Grand Cayman.

49ers
04-05-2013, 12:29 PM
then doing the fifth semester on the island would be the better way to go

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 12:49 PM
then doing the fifth semester on the island would be the better way to go

Do you want to practice in the US or the UK?

49ers
04-05-2013, 12:53 PM
i want to keep both options open. but i def want to be eligible to be able to apply for the foundation programme

DavesDad
04-05-2013, 01:23 PM
i want to keep both options open. but i def want to be eligible to be able to apply for the foundation programme

You must make sure that you maintain the 50/50 ratio necessary for acceptance, but you'll also be subject to both their other criteria and any changes that occur from now until your graduation. Also, I was told in written correspondences by individuals at the GMC that St. Matthews had been warned on several occasions that some of their graduating doctors would not be accepted by the GMC. St. Matthews then knowingly proceeded without notifying either the students or the public as to the acceptability in the UK of the degrees they were conferring. St. Matthews is designated by the GMC as one of the schools that "may be acceptable," but once stories like mine with the collaborating proof become public, I can't imagine that designation will improve. Remember, the GMC can reject any application from a graduate coming from a school with that designation. So put yourself in their position. How willing would you be to allow in a recent St. Matthews graduate knowing that St. Matthews was just shown to have had a history of graduating MDs they knew wouldn't be accepted?

sandyjay
04-05-2013, 11:59 PM
You must make sure that you maintain the 50/50 ratio necessary for acceptance, but you'll also be subject to both their other criteria and any changes that occur from now until your graduation. Also, I was told in written correspondences by individuals at the GMC that St. Matthews had been warned on several occasions that some of their graduating doctors would not be accepted by the GMC. St. Matthews then knowingly proceeded without notifying either the students or the public as to the acceptability in the UK of the degrees they were conferring. St. Matthews is designated by the GMC as one of the schools that "may be acceptable," but once stories like mine with the collaborating proof become public, I can't imagine that designation will improve. Remember, the GMC can reject any application from a graduate coming from a school with that designation. So put yourself in their position. How willing would you be to allow in a recent St. Matthews graduate knowing that St. Matthews was just shown to have had a history of graduating MDs they knew wouldn't be accepted?

After reading the SMU prospectus I did a calculation on the length of the basic science course (5 semesters) which could be completed in the Cayman islands and the clinical sciences completed elsewhere and note that at SMU the Basic Science course is of 75 weeks duration (no holidays classes and exams only) while the Clinical science section is of 80 weeks duration. Is it this that tips the 50:50: scale that the GMC is talking about?

I also note that the SGU Basic Science course comes to 85 weeks in Grenada( Classes and exams only) and the Clinical Sciences requirement is 80 weeks. which tips the scale towards Grenada if the student does the entire basic science course in Grenada . I presume if the 1st year of Basic Sciences is done in the UK then students hoping to enter the UK F1 programme have to spend about 45 to 50 weeks in Grenada in Clinical rotations /electives.?

DavesDad
04-06-2013, 07:52 AM
After reading the SMU prospectus I did a calculation on the length of the basic science course (5 semesters) which could be completed in the Cayman islands and the clinical sciences completed elsewhere and note that at SMU the Basic Science course is of 75 weeks duration (no holidays classes and exams only) while the Clinical science section is of 80 weeks duration. Is it this that tips the 50:50: scale that the GMC is talking about?

I also note that the SGU Basic Science course comes to 85 weeks in Grenada( Classes and exams only) and the Clinical Sciences requirement is 80 weeks. which tips the scale towards Grenada if the student does the entire basic science course in Grenada . I presume if the 1st year of Basic Sciences is done in the UK then students hoping to enter the UK F1 programme have to spend about 45 to 50 weeks in Grenada in Clinical rotations /electives.?

Unfortunately, there are loads of ways like the one you mentioned that a school in St. Matthews’ position can mess up while trying to be compliant with all of the GMC's rules (or any countries set of rules). The larger problem becomes when the school attempts to hide their mess-ups and not inform those effected by them. St. Matthews let me graduate knowing that I would never be accepted to practice in the UK. I was never warned, never told that anything was wrong, and I followed the exact curriculum I was told to follow while obtaining my degree. I believe, and this is just my opinion, that those people at the GMC who told me that St. Matthews had been privately warned did so because they were tired of telling people they wasted years and tens, if not a hundred, thousand dollars getting a MD that is completely worthless in their country. If I was in their position, every doctor I had to turn away because a school mislead them about their qualifications I would give enough information for that person to sue the school as publicly, and for as much money, as possible.

EQUALITY
04-06-2013, 10:41 PM
Unfortunately, there are loads of ways like the one you mentioned that a school in St. Matthews’ position can mess up while trying to be compliant with all of the GMC's rules (or any countries set of rules). The larger problem becomes when the school attempts to hide their mess-ups and not inform those effected by them. St. Matthews let me graduate knowing that I would never be accepted to practice in the UK. I was never warned, never told that anything was wrong, and I followed the exact curriculum I was told to follow while obtaining my degree. I believe, and this is just my opinion, that those people at the GMC who told me that St. Matthews had been privately warned did so because they were tired of telling people they wasted years and tens, if not a hundred, thousand dollars getting a MD that is completely worthless in their country. If I was in their position, every doctor I had to turn away because a school mislead them about their qualifications I would give enough information for that person to sue the school as publicly, and for as much money, as possible.

I believe the problem is only for the st. Matthews students that did there basic sciences in Maine. Maine is no longer an available option If you did your basic sciences at main campus and now only campus in grand Cayman. you are fine to apply to England.

sandyjay
04-07-2013, 05:46 AM
Unfortunately, there are loads of ways like the one you mentioned that a school in St. Matthews’ position can mess up while trying to be compliant with all of the GMC's rules (or any countries set of rules). The larger problem becomes when the school attempts to hide their mess-ups and not inform those effected by them. St. Matthews let me graduate knowing that I would never be accepted to practice in the UK. I was never warned, never told that anything was wrong, and I followed the exact curriculum I was told to follow while obtaining my degree. I believe, and this is just my opinion, that those people at the GMC who told me that St. Matthews had been privately warned did so because they were tired of telling people they wasted years and tens, if not a hundred, thousand dollars getting a MD that is completely worthless in their country. If I was in their position, every doctor I had to turn away because a school mislead them about their qualifications I would give enough information for that person to sue the school as publicly, and for as much money, as possible.

pls let the forum know if you did all your basic sciences in the Cayman Islands and your Clinicals elsewhere I think the crux of the matter lies in the 75 weeks of Basic Sciences vis a vis 80 weeks of Clinicals Is this correct? thanks in advance for the answer.

best of luck

EQUALITY
04-08-2013, 01:35 AM
pls let the forum know if you did all your basic sciences in the Cayman Islands and your Clinicals elsewhere I think the crux of the matter lies in the 75 weeks of Basic Sciences vis a vis 80 weeks of Clinicals Is this correct? thanks in advance for the answer.

best of luck
That is not correct. please check st. Matthews university website. clinicals are only 72 weeks.

sandyjay
04-08-2013, 10:07 AM
That is not correct. please check st. Matthews university website. clinicals are only 72 weeks.
Sorry I was made to understand that family medicine and Neurology each of 4 week duration are mandatory in addition to surgery,IM,Peds,Obs and Gyn psychaitry and 30 weeks of other electives of the students choice .If the clinical course is 72 weeks then with a 75 week basic science course on the Island conferring the degree OP wouldn't have a problem with the 50 percent issue why doesn't OP answer this question?

Future MD | DM erutuF
04-08-2013, 08:00 PM
Seems to me the issue at hand is the location of 5th semester. When I was on the island, we had a choice as to where we did 5th: Cayman or Miami. I'm not sure what the situation is right now, but if you have a choice as to where you 5th, seems like doing it in Cayman would tip the scales favorably towards you.

As a side note, doing 5th in Miami had the advantage of a real Kaplan course for the Step 1, hence why the majority of my classmates did it there. I chose not to and did very well on the Step 1, so don't let that sway your decision-making process. Unless you need the structure of a regimented course outline, if you are interested in practicing in the UK, stick with 5th in Cayman.







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