Canadians Studying Medicine Abroad
This update is just to let you all know what is happening. Our small executive group from Vancouver and Victoria met again last night. We now have information on 258 BC students attending medical schools outside
. The big inflow of names has stopped so we assume that we have probably captured most people. Thank you for all your efforts in contacting people and helping create this list. Canada
We now think it is time to get other provinces doing the same thing. We have already had contact from people in
and have encouraged them to follow our lead. We are convinced that the larger our lobby group grows the better. We would like you all, students and parents alike, to send the word out to your friends in the rest of Alberta to start a similar process in each province. If they need help or advice, we would be happy to provide it. Canada
New Medical Students:
We would appreciate it if you would pass our information on to all the new medical students starting school now. We need to build them into our data base so please give them our contacts. If there are Canadian Medical Student Societies at your school, please ask them to include this information in their welcome packages.
Membership of Provincial Medical Associations and CMA:
BC students, please join the BC Medical Association. It is essential that you do so in order to give us a strong lobby within the organization. Please notify us when you have received your membership so that we can track the numbers. The cost is $5 per year and that entitles you to membership in the Canadian Medical Association as well. Here again is the contact information: www.bcma.org or firstname.lastname@example.org or 604-638-2927
There are benefits to be had such as the BC Medical Journal and the CMA Journal. In addition, we would like you to encourage your colleagues from other provinces to join their provincial medical associations. The more we are, the stronger the lobbying voice.
We are proceeding to get advice on incorporating the organization. We should have more on this in the next newsletter. With incorporation, will come the formation of a Board of Directors. Until then, we thought it might be easier to continue with the group we have and call on people who have volunteered to do various things as necessary. When the board is formed, there are many things to keep in mind for representative purposes: geographic distribution, years to graduation from medical school, physicians and non-physicians, special talents and skills etc etc.
We need a name for our group. The best we have come up with so far is Society of Canadians Studying Medicine Abroad (SCSMA). We felt this might be general enough and each provincial group could append their province so we would be SCSMA/BC. We are open to suggestions. We will begin to draft vision and mission statements.
We feel that development of a website will be an important step. So if you, and this is directed to the parents, have special skills in this regard, we could really use your help. Here is the website address of the International Medical Graduates of BC: http://www.aimdbc.com/home Please take a look at this and see how good it is. We need ours to be at least as good as this if not better. At some stage, we will plan to meet with this group of International Medical Graduates as our goals may not be as far apart as they might think.
Meeting with the Ministry of Health:
We will be meeting again with officials from the Ministry of Health on October 9th. We will be following up on all the points we raised in the first meeting. They promise to have some answers for us. We also have some new issues to raise with them. If you have questions or points you wish us to bring up, please let us know right away.
Meeting with the Dean of Medicine UBC:
We have requested a meeting with Dean Gavin Stuart to discuss our issues.
If you have access to the Premier, the Minister for Health or Liberal Ministers and MLAs, then please talk to them about this issue. They are very aware of it but pressure from voting constituents may help move this forward. It is probably not wise, at this juncture, to involve Opposition MLAs or the media, as backing the government into a corner could merely harden attitudes.
Please feel free to contact us with any ideas, comments or suggestions you might have.
Ross, James, Drew, Angela and Curby