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The Faculty of Medical Sciences, St Augustine, and its contribution to Human Resource Development in the Caribbean

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Introduction: The University of the West Indies (UWI), Faculty of Medical Sciences (FMS), St Augustine campus, began teaching its undergraduate programme in October 1989, in three Schools: Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary Medicine. The first batch of students graduated in 1994. A fouryear Pharmacy Programme commenced in 1995, producing its first graduates in 1999 and ten years later an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing was started and saw its first graduates in 2006.
In its twenty years of existence, the FMS has graduated 2380 students from its undergraduate programmes. The faculty has thus strengthened the human resource capacity in the health sector of most of the contributing territories of the Caribbean region and the vast majority of the undergraduates have been from Trinidad and Tobago.

Objective: To present a longitudinal study of the number of graduates from 1994 to 2008, and to highlight the number of doctors, dentists, veterinarians, pharmacists and nurses in the region and beyond, who have graduated from the programmes of the FMS.

Rationale: The FMS, St Augustine, plays an important role in producing qualified health personnel. The study is a compilation of graduates from the UWI, FMS, St Augustine from 1994 to 2008. The first batch, which started in 1989, graduated in 1994. No other compilation of this type exists for other faculties.

Methods: Data were obtained by harvesting the names of graduates from the graduation booklets, and by cross-checking administration records of the Faculty’s Office.

Results: The study shows that fifteen of the sixteen contributing Caribbean territories have had graduates from the FMS, St Augustine, with Anguilla the one exception. Other graduates have come from beyond the region, including 16 developed and developing nations.

Conclusion: The FMS, St Augustine, serves a key role in providing health professionals for the region.

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e-Published: 15 Oct, 2013
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