I remain pleased with the implementation of our Undergraduate Medical Education (UGME) accreditation plan. Our program is much stronger today, thanks to the many groups and individuals involved at all levels, including our students.
In February 2017, CACMS and LCME* will visit the Faculty to conduct a “limited site survey.” Their job will be to assess our status to date compared to their last visit in 2015. Our ultimate goal is to exceed accreditation standards over time and to continue to excel, which I have no doubt we will do. Our new MDCM curriculum is also resolving certain deficiencies identified by the accreditors, which is excellent news.
In summary, most actions we introduced over the last 18 months are now completed, while ongoing initiatives are working very well. Certain improvements will take longer before the outcomes can be measured and demonstrated, which is normal. It is a question of time.
Key areas of focus in the coming months include:
- Launch of the Faculty’s next strategic planning exercise, referred to as Project Renaissance, and closure of the current Think Dangerously plan, which will occur in spring 2017, when the first cohort of the new MDCM curriculum graduates.
- Implementation of Entrada™, our newly acquired curriculum management software, which will enable us to more effectively map objectives to course content, monitor comparability between sites, track student assessments, and continuously measure and improve MDCM curriculum performance.
- Fair and timely summative assessments, to address ongoing, unacceptable delays in the submission of grades to students in certain areas.
- Monitoring of time students spend in education and clinical activities, to ensure the UGME workload policy for students is respected at all times.
- Launch of the Learning Environment Advisory Panel (LEAP), to ensure comprehensive oversight of the learning environment.
- Ongoing improvements in our communication with students.
Details of our UGME accreditation initiatives are posted online for consultation at any time.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who participated in our simulated accreditation exercise in October, which enabled us to validate our progress, identify gaps and hone in on those areas where more work is needed. Your participation was invaluable, as was the input of our “mock” accreditors, Drs. Joyce Pickering and Jay Rosenfield, for which we are very grateful. A similar exercise will be conducted in January 2017.
From early in the process, we saw our accreditation status as an opportunity to reinforce our governance and operations and, most importantly, to improve the overall educational experience for students. The major changes we have made and the lessons learned are being incorporated into our normal operations, based on a continuous quality improvement philosophy and approach. We are confident the investment in time and effort will more than prove its worth, benefiting students, as well as faculty members and staff, into the future.
Thank you, in advance, to everyone involved, directly or on the periphery, including our exceptionally engaged students, for ensuring we remain on track.
Vice-Principal (Health Affairs)
Dean of the Faculty of Medicine
*CACMS/LCME refers to the Committee on the Accreditation of Canadian Medical Schools and the U.S. Liaison Committee on Medical Education.
December 14, 2016