Ottawa-Shanghai joint medical program a first

Posted on Friday, October 17, 2014

The University of Ottawa has created a joint medical program with Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China.

The new Ottawa-Shanghai Joint Program of Medicine, offered in Shanghai, will bring the uOttawa Faculty of Medicine's four-year medical education (MD) program to China.  It's the first time a school of medicine in China has adopted a North American medical education program. It's also the first Sino-Canadian joint medical program.

Classes will start next fall for 30 Chinese students, who will participate in an introductory program. The four-year-MD program will start in 2016.

Students will be taught by professors from both the University of Ottawa's Faculty of Medicine and the Shanghai Jiao Tong School of Medicine (SJTUSM), a leading school of its type in China. They will complete much of their hospital studies at Renji Hospital, the first western-style hospital in Shanghai, established in 1844.

Dr. Jacques Bradwejn, dean of medicine at the University of Ottawa, says the collaboration will open up unprecedented opportunities for students and faculty at both universities.

Students in Shanghai will be offered world-class medical training primarily in English in a partnership that will also include exchanges and collaborative research projects. The University of Ottawa and SJTUSM have each committed $1 million to research in medicine and medical education innovation.

There will also be two-way exchanges for students and faculty. University of Ottawa MD students will be able to go to Shanghai and take courses in traditional Chinese medicine, Mandarin and other subjects. Similarly, students from Shanghai will have the opportunity to spend some time studying at the uOttawa Faculty of Medicine.

“This is the start of a meaningful and historic partnership that will broaden our international reach. It will provide Canadian and Chinese students with the opportunity to learn how medicine is practised in another culture,” said University of Ottawa President Allan Rock.

Now that the MD program is implemented, the two universities are developing residency programs in family medicine, to address a significant need in China. There are also plans for medical residents from uOttawa to gain clinical experience and benefit from the large patient volume at Renji Hospital and other hospitals in Shanghai.

Dr. Bradwejn said uOttawa's Faculty of Medicine, consistently ranked among the top in Canada for medical education and research, beat out competing partnership bids from several U.S. Ivy League schools and other research-intensive universities.

“Both uOttawa and Shanghai Jiao Tong University are strongly committed to a long-term substantial partnership. We are aiming eventually at dual MD degrees and joint residency programs.”

The new medical program will be launched on October 17 in Shanghai, as the cornerstone of the Ottawa-Shanghai Joint School of Medicine.

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