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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

An assessment of the doctorate of medicine (internal medicine), University of the West Indies.

The outcome is described of 48 entrants to a postgraduate degree course (DM) in Internal Medicine established at the University of the West Indies in 1974. Contact by postal questionnaire was established in 96% of 26 graduates and 82% of 22 non-graduates. 22 of 25 DM graduate responders have remained in the Caribbean, working in six Caribbean territories. All graduate responders developed a subspecialty interest. The graduates' primary employers are the University (9) and the Government (12). However, failure to graduate did not necessarily preclude qualification as consultant physician (7 of 18 responders). Major difficulties with the DM programme included: (1) in practice, lack of recognition by contributing territories of individual DM (Internal Medicine) graduates; (2) incomplete regional coverage; (3) lack of adequate funding for the programme; (4) an inadequate research training input; and (5) difficulties with seniority for staff who trained in Jamaica to go to work in another territory. All these problems have solutions. Overall, the international recognition of the new degree programme has been satisfactory and the graduates' own assessment of the training was complimentary. At last a system has been devised that enables postgraduates to train as internal medicine specialists in the Caribbean to practise effectively within the Caribbean health system.[1]


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