Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Poor quality doctors?

What is the reason why we have poor quality doctors?

Is it due to the low prerequisites allowed for preparatory medical colleges? OR

Is it due to the poor quality of teaching and examination standards in the University?

Personally I would think that it is the low examination standards in the Uni. The uni can take in any students they want but if their standards are high, some students will not be able to coup up with the course and eventually will dropout.

Furthermore many foreign uni are getting more and more commercialize and making money is more important than producing good doctors.

Is it true that raising the entry requirement of medical schools will produce quality and good doctors? I do not think so. To be a good doctor, one must have passion to save people. If a doctor is only interested in making money, will he be a good doctors.

What is actually meant by quality of doctors as referred to by MMA?

MMA: Raise the bar for future doctors
PETALING JAYA: There is growing concern about the quality of doctors that the country is churning out.

This is due to the low prerequisites allowed for preparatory medical colleges, known to accept SPM-level students with the minimum requirement of Bs in sciences.

From there, the students have a high chance of getting into universities in countries like Russia and Indonesia.

“There must be some quality or level of excellence before one can realistically aspire to be a doctor,” Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) president Dr David Quek told The Star.

“If one is not good enough there will be problems of quality later on when he or she becomes a doctor.

“It is not simply about getting a degree or a name. It has bearings on human life and patient safety,” he added.

“The association is unhappy that we are having so many routes to medical schools.

“We are creating an unrealistic atmosphere of easy entry for anyone who can afford to pay but whose scholastic ability may be way off the mark,” added Dr Quek.

Readers of The Star have also written in to express their concern on the many “shoplot medical schools.”

While medical universities require recognition by the Malaysian Medical Council (MMC) before their graduates can practise medicine, the council does not have the authority to regulate pre-university courses tied with medical degree programmes.

“We are now looking into the entry criteria for medical students, and if these are too low, then we have recommended remedial measures to limit these medical colleges from being recognised as acceptable standards,” said Dr Quek, who is a council member.

“We are also working with the Higher Education Ministry and its agencies to ensure that foundation courses be of acceptable standards and duration, and that only sufficiently qualified students are accepted,” he added.

Universiti Malaya physiology professor Dr Cheng Hwee Ming said a student also had to master the art of decision making besides having clinical skills.

Rheumatologist Dr Pagalavan Letchumanan, who has trained housemen and lectured for 13 years, said the key point should be clear standardisation for entrance requirements.

“If we regulate the intake of medical students, say through MMC-certified prerequisites, just like our medical degrees, we can be more assured of the quality of our future graduates,” he added.

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