KI welcomes government proposal for reformed medical programme
The government is proposing one year of “basic residential training” for medical students and that the medical programme be extended to six years. A licence to practise will be issued straight after graduation and the current system of “AT” residential training will be discontinued.
“This will be a good opportunity to review and develop the medicine study programme at KI and also adapt it to the needs of healthcare in the future,” says Annika Östman Wernerson, Dean of Higher Education at KI.
A completely new and extended medical programme after which a licence to practise will be issued straight after graduation and instead of intern employment [AT], basic residential training [bastjänstgöring] will be incorporated into the study programme. This can be reality for the students who start studying medicine as of around the year 2020.
The proposal regarding basic residential training, which is intended to be an independent initial part of specialist training, was sent out by the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs for consultation on 22 November. The government's proposal was presented in more detail at the InFuturum conference on 23 November.
The focus of basic residential training will be on primary care and emergency care. It has not been regulated exactly how long basic residential training will last; normally, it will take one year but it could also be done faster. It will be possible for a person with previous experience to be given credit for that. According to the proposal, knowledge of psychiatry will be “taken into particular account”.
The ability to cooperate with others will be important and also to constantly strive to make improvements. In addition, students will practise taking decisions and medical science and professional training will be integrated throughout the study programme. All skills will be assessed, not only knowledge. Another way the medicine study programme will be changed is that there will be more clinical assessments and fewer written exams.
“I can see many positive aspects in the proposal, for example, a strong emphasis on the importance of future doctors having different skills and the importance of collaboration with society, other professions and patients. Other important elements are the use of pedagogical methods that activate the student and a review of examination methods," says Annika Östman Wernerson, Dean of Higher Education at KI.
Basic residential training will be introduced if the new, reformed six-year medicine study programme comes about. Medical training has previously focused on acute illness processes but now there will be a stronger emphasis on chronic illness processes.
The medical students need to be where the patients are
Next year, the new highly specialised intensive care emergency centre will open at Karolinska University Hospital where only the most seriously ill patients will be treated. This means that when patients with less serious diagnoses are treated at other hospitals, many diagnoses will no longer be represented at Karolinska University Hospital. Moreover, the number of patients at the highly specialised intensive care emergency centre is expected to be low. In order for medical students to get the right training, the study programme must now be organised differently.
“This will be a good opportunity to review and develop the medicine study programme at KI and also adapt it to the needs of healthcare in the future. Our students need to be where the patients are. That is why primary care is an important arena and we hope that the academic specialist centres in Stockholm will play a prominent role in the study programmes at KI,” says Annika Östman Wernerson.
The extension of the medical programme is also mentioned in the government’s autumn budget. SEK 9 million will be invested during 2018 which is the equivalent of 40 student places distributed among the universities that offer medical training. It is unclear how many places KI will be given but when the Board of Higher Education at KI met at the end of October, a plan for increasing the number of places by four was presented.
Text: Maja Lundbäck
New education places at KI with more funding
The government’s autumn budget includes several major investments in education. In addition to an earmarked increase of the medical programme, KI will also be given substantially more funding with no restrictions regarding how the money is used. At a meeting on 25 October, the Board of Higher Education at KI presented a plan for how the funding will be distributed. The first step will be to increase, as of 2018, the number of places for new students on:
- The Occupational Therapy programme: 8 extra places
- The Biomedical Laboratory Science programme: 10 extra places
- The Physiotherapy programme: 10 extra places
- The Medical programme: 4 extra places
- The Optometry programme: 3 extra places