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     FrontPage Edition: Fri 15 April 2005

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NUS to set up Singapore's second medical school

Source: www.nus.edu.sg

Singapore’s Second Medical School – A Collaboration Between The National University Of Singapore And Duke University

The National University of Singapore (NUS) has signed an agreement with Duke University to establish the NUS Graduate Medical School (GMS).
The establishment of the GMS will be a major boost to Singapore’s vision to become a centre of excellence in medical education, clinical research and healthcare delivery.
The GMS will attract top faculty and students from Singapore and abroad, and produce a new stream of medical doctors and clinician-scientists to augment our outstanding pool of doctors and research capabilities.
The GMS will offer a graduate-entry medical programme in collaboration with Duke University. The 4-year programme leading to a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree will provide medical training based largely on the Duke curriculum.
Duke University, which is consistently ranked among the top American medical schools by U.S. News and World Report, is renowned for its rigorous and innovative medical education programme with a distinctive focus on research.
Students of the GMS will devote the third year of their 4-year course on research projects either of the basic sciences or clinical nature, and have the opportunity to work side-by-side with clinician-scientists in both the GMS and Duke University.
The collaboration between NUS and Duke will also see the secondment of top Duke faculty to the GMS. The faculty will be involved in teaching and research that is relevant to Singapore’s Biomedical Sciences initiative.
“I am tremendously impressed by Singapore’s vision of leadership in science and medicine,” said Victor J. Dzau, M.D., Chancellor for Health Affairs at Duke University and President & CEO of the Duke University Health System. “Singapore’s education system is one of the best in the world, and the government has embarked on an aggressive strategy to become Asia’s powerhouse in the biomedical sciences. I have no doubt they will succeed. Joining together as partners represents a valuable strategic opportunity for Duke to have a global presence in science, and to apply the very best science to the challenges of global health.”
NUS looks forward to the infusion of Duke’s ethos and culture into the GMS that will help it achieve world-class standing in the field of medical education and research. NUS President Prof Shih Choon Fong said, "This is a milestone for NUS in its drive to be a global university. The collaboration will add diversity to the medical community and complement the existing medical school at Kent Ridge. The synergies from the distinctive twin peaks of excellence will help establish Singapore as the premier centre for academic medicine in the region and beyond."
The Ministry of Health welcomes the establishment of the GMS which will help to inject diversity into our local medical training and in the longer term, the local medical profession. The GMS will tap on the training resources, facilities, talent and patient base of both the SingHealth and National Healthcare Group hospitals.
SingHealth’s Group CEO Prof Tan Ser Kiat said, “This historic move is significant in transforming Outram Campus into an Academic Medical Hub and building a world-class medical education system. The location is also significant as medical education in Singapore has its roots on this Campus. SingHealth looks forward to contributing to the GMS with resources such as professional talent from our institutions both on and off the Campus, infrastructure and patient base. The GMS will provide an intellectual milieu where our talent can maximise their potential. It will also foster the growth of translational and patient-oriented research and the life sciences for the benefit of patients. SingHealth looks forward to working with Duke, NUS and the medical, research and biomedical communities to achieve this vision.”
The GMS will be headed on an interim basis by Dr R. Sanders Williams, who is concurrently the Dean, Duke University School of Medicine. Dr Williams will also chair a working committee to work out the GMS implementation blueprint (which includes faculty recruitment, student admissions, and the GMS permanent facilities) with a view to admit the inaugural intake of 25 students in 2007.
“Singapore has made a vast commitment to becoming a leader in biomedical research, and they also fund an enviable level of social support and health services for their population,” said Dr Williams. “The leadership of Duke and the Singapore government share many values, and we believe our partnership will lay the foundation for health advances that will have global impact.”
*The GMS will be located at the Outram Campus where SingHealth’s institutions are situated.

Source: National University of Singapore Press Release 14 Apr 2005

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