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The medical faculty in the School of Medicine at Otago University deserves great praise for the steady progress that has been made year by year in the medical school. The public purse and munificence of public-spirited citizens have provided new buildings, new class-rooms and laboratories, and there is now a large staff of professors, lecturers and assistants, in contrast to the days when one professor was expected to teach both anatomy and physiology. We believe that one medical school will suffice for the needs of New Zealand for a long time to come, and that the medial school should remain in Dunedin, but the recent political blunder of sub-dividing the Otago hospital district has caused serious but not vital damage to the Dunedin medical school. The amount of clinical material available may be sufficient, or barely sufficient, for present teaching requirements in Dunedin, but it is insufficient for further progress. The systematic lectures and laboratory teaching present no difficulties, but if students are not to have an abundance of bedside teaching they will become very indifferent practitioners. Fortunately there is available at Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland, clinical material for teaching purposes sufficient to supplement what may be lacking at Dunedin. If the medical course is to be extended to six years a number of sixth year students should be sent to other hospitals form Dunedin for further clinical training. As a preliminary to this it will be necessary to organise the honorary staffs of the large hospitals with a view to efficient teaching. Probably the members of honorary staffs who give time and thought to clinical teaching will need to be paid for their services. In any event it is time that the honorary staffs of hospitals met regularly together to discuss methods for the improvement of their work and for the continued raising of the standard of hospital practice. The surgeons, physicians and specialists respectively should meet to further the progress of their own branch of practice. It may be advisable to have honorary assistants appointed at the large hospitals in England and in America.

An urgent need is to give powers to the Medical Board of New Zealand to exercise some control over medical education in accordance with the practice in England. If the New Zealand Medical Board had power to appoint visitors and to make suitable recommendations it would strengthen the hands of the medical faculty in the medical school. If something upon the lines suggested is not accomplished there is a prospect of the New Zealand Medical School becoming over-crowded, so that an increasing, and not a diminishing number of young New Zealanders will proceed to the Home Universities.

There can be no objection to examinations within certain limits, but at present, unfortunately, medical education is overlaid with examinations and concomitant cramming. Answering within a specified time a series of written or spoken questions may be a test of memory depending partly on the recent reading of the candidate, and the whim of the examiner, but it is a very incomplete test of intellect, and of acquired knowledge and efficiency. During the final year devoted to clinical teaching in the larger hospitals, the students should pass or fail not on the usual examination test, but on the quality of their work for the year which depends on applied knowledge, common-sense, industry not unmixed with the spirit of enquiry and criticism.

The post-graduate standard of medical knowledge and training, for a medical practitioner must be a student all his days, will be greatly improved by the adoption of Professor Barnett’s scheme for the foundation of an Association of Surgeons in New Zealand. In the same way an association of physicians can be formed. Such an association, managed as it should be, can do no wrong to anyone, and will provide for New Zealand medical graduates a system of training tested by clinical skill and experience. Where this scheme is now in practice it has done much to raise the standard of both hospital and private practice, and it cannot operate less beneficently in New Zealand than elsewhere.

Summary

Abstract

Aim

Method

Results

Conclusion

Author Information

Acknowledgements

Correspondence

Correspondence Email

Competing Interests

Nil.

For the PDF of this article,
contact nzmj@nzma.org.nz

View Article PDF

The medical faculty in the School of Medicine at Otago University deserves great praise for the steady progress that has been made year by year in the medical school. The public purse and munificence of public-spirited citizens have provided new buildings, new class-rooms and laboratories, and there is now a large staff of professors, lecturers and assistants, in contrast to the days when one professor was expected to teach both anatomy and physiology. We believe that one medical school will suffice for the needs of New Zealand for a long time to come, and that the medial school should remain in Dunedin, but the recent political blunder of sub-dividing the Otago hospital district has caused serious but not vital damage to the Dunedin medical school. The amount of clinical material available may be sufficient, or barely sufficient, for present teaching requirements in Dunedin, but it is insufficient for further progress. The systematic lectures and laboratory teaching present no difficulties, but if students are not to have an abundance of bedside teaching they will become very indifferent practitioners. Fortunately there is available at Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland, clinical material for teaching purposes sufficient to supplement what may be lacking at Dunedin. If the medical course is to be extended to six years a number of sixth year students should be sent to other hospitals form Dunedin for further clinical training. As a preliminary to this it will be necessary to organise the honorary staffs of the large hospitals with a view to efficient teaching. Probably the members of honorary staffs who give time and thought to clinical teaching will need to be paid for their services. In any event it is time that the honorary staffs of hospitals met regularly together to discuss methods for the improvement of their work and for the continued raising of the standard of hospital practice. The surgeons, physicians and specialists respectively should meet to further the progress of their own branch of practice. It may be advisable to have honorary assistants appointed at the large hospitals in England and in America.

An urgent need is to give powers to the Medical Board of New Zealand to exercise some control over medical education in accordance with the practice in England. If the New Zealand Medical Board had power to appoint visitors and to make suitable recommendations it would strengthen the hands of the medical faculty in the medical school. If something upon the lines suggested is not accomplished there is a prospect of the New Zealand Medical School becoming over-crowded, so that an increasing, and not a diminishing number of young New Zealanders will proceed to the Home Universities.

There can be no objection to examinations within certain limits, but at present, unfortunately, medical education is overlaid with examinations and concomitant cramming. Answering within a specified time a series of written or spoken questions may be a test of memory depending partly on the recent reading of the candidate, and the whim of the examiner, but it is a very incomplete test of intellect, and of acquired knowledge and efficiency. During the final year devoted to clinical teaching in the larger hospitals, the students should pass or fail not on the usual examination test, but on the quality of their work for the year which depends on applied knowledge, common-sense, industry not unmixed with the spirit of enquiry and criticism.

The post-graduate standard of medical knowledge and training, for a medical practitioner must be a student all his days, will be greatly improved by the adoption of Professor Barnett’s scheme for the foundation of an Association of Surgeons in New Zealand. In the same way an association of physicians can be formed. Such an association, managed as it should be, can do no wrong to anyone, and will provide for New Zealand medical graduates a system of training tested by clinical skill and experience. Where this scheme is now in practice it has done much to raise the standard of both hospital and private practice, and it cannot operate less beneficently in New Zealand than elsewhere.

Summary

Abstract

Aim

Method

Results

Conclusion

Author Information

Acknowledgements

Correspondence

Correspondence Email

Competing Interests

Nil.

For the PDF of this article,
contact nzmj@nzma.org.nz

View Article PDF

The medical faculty in the School of Medicine at Otago University deserves great praise for the steady progress that has been made year by year in the medical school. The public purse and munificence of public-spirited citizens have provided new buildings, new class-rooms and laboratories, and there is now a large staff of professors, lecturers and assistants, in contrast to the days when one professor was expected to teach both anatomy and physiology. We believe that one medical school will suffice for the needs of New Zealand for a long time to come, and that the medial school should remain in Dunedin, but the recent political blunder of sub-dividing the Otago hospital district has caused serious but not vital damage to the Dunedin medical school. The amount of clinical material available may be sufficient, or barely sufficient, for present teaching requirements in Dunedin, but it is insufficient for further progress. The systematic lectures and laboratory teaching present no difficulties, but if students are not to have an abundance of bedside teaching they will become very indifferent practitioners. Fortunately there is available at Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland, clinical material for teaching purposes sufficient to supplement what may be lacking at Dunedin. If the medical course is to be extended to six years a number of sixth year students should be sent to other hospitals form Dunedin for further clinical training. As a preliminary to this it will be necessary to organise the honorary staffs of the large hospitals with a view to efficient teaching. Probably the members of honorary staffs who give time and thought to clinical teaching will need to be paid for their services. In any event it is time that the honorary staffs of hospitals met regularly together to discuss methods for the improvement of their work and for the continued raising of the standard of hospital practice. The surgeons, physicians and specialists respectively should meet to further the progress of their own branch of practice. It may be advisable to have honorary assistants appointed at the large hospitals in England and in America.

An urgent need is to give powers to the Medical Board of New Zealand to exercise some control over medical education in accordance with the practice in England. If the New Zealand Medical Board had power to appoint visitors and to make suitable recommendations it would strengthen the hands of the medical faculty in the medical school. If something upon the lines suggested is not accomplished there is a prospect of the New Zealand Medical School becoming over-crowded, so that an increasing, and not a diminishing number of young New Zealanders will proceed to the Home Universities.

There can be no objection to examinations within certain limits, but at present, unfortunately, medical education is overlaid with examinations and concomitant cramming. Answering within a specified time a series of written or spoken questions may be a test of memory depending partly on the recent reading of the candidate, and the whim of the examiner, but it is a very incomplete test of intellect, and of acquired knowledge and efficiency. During the final year devoted to clinical teaching in the larger hospitals, the students should pass or fail not on the usual examination test, but on the quality of their work for the year which depends on applied knowledge, common-sense, industry not unmixed with the spirit of enquiry and criticism.

The post-graduate standard of medical knowledge and training, for a medical practitioner must be a student all his days, will be greatly improved by the adoption of Professor Barnett’s scheme for the foundation of an Association of Surgeons in New Zealand. In the same way an association of physicians can be formed. Such an association, managed as it should be, can do no wrong to anyone, and will provide for New Zealand medical graduates a system of training tested by clinical skill and experience. Where this scheme is now in practice it has done much to raise the standard of both hospital and private practice, and it cannot operate less beneficently in New Zealand than elsewhere.

Summary

Abstract

Aim

Method

Results

Conclusion

Author Information

Acknowledgements

Correspondence

Correspondence Email

Competing Interests

Nil.

Contact diana@nzma.org.nz
for the PDF of this article

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