Welcome to the last edition of mediNEWSotago for 2009.
Again there has been sad news for members of the Faculty as we learned of the deaths of Dr Pat Farry from the Department of General Practice and Rural Health in the Dunedin School of Medicine, and Emeritus Professor Sir Don Beaven, who was the foundation Professor of Medicine at the University of Otago Christchurch. Both made major contributions to the Faculty and to the University over many years, and will be greatly missed. Our sympathies and thoughts are with their families, friends and colleagues.
Graduations are upon us for those completing our courses and programmes, and admissions processes for new students in 2010 are well advanced. Promotions successes have been announced, one of our graduating students (Thomas Hills) has been awarded a Rhodes scholarship, and Professor Alan Herbison has been awarded the Health Research Council’s Liley medal for 2009: congratulations to Alan for this outstanding recognition of his and his team’s research contributions.
And finally, my thanks for all your contributions throughout the year, and my best wishes to all in the Faculty for a relaxing, safe, and happy festive season for you, your families and friends.
Professor Don Roberton
Dean, Faculty of Medicine, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr Pat Farry – Obituary
The Faculty is deeply saddened by the sudden death on October 9 of Dr Pat Farry, and wishes to acknowledge Pat’s very significant contribution to the Division and especially to the Dunedin School of Medicine.
Pat became a lecturer in the Department of General Practice in 1980 and a senior lecturer in 1990. From 1999 he headed the Te Waipounamu Rural Health Unit, and in 2007 he developed the Rural Medical Immersion Programme.
It was Pat’s passion and tireless determination to improve the quality of rural medicine that will be one of his lasting professional legacies, and in 2009 this was recognised when Pat was made a member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for services to rural medicine.
Pat’s belief in what he thought was important and his determination to make a difference will provide inspiration for others. His enthusiasm for the Rural Medical Immersion Programme, and his mentoring of the students in that programme will always be remembered as examples to us all.
Our sympathy is with his wife Sue and their three sons and their families.
Emeritus Professor Sir Don Beaven
Professor Sir Don Beaven died tragically in a house fire on November 4 while at his holiday home in Little Akaloa.
He was the foundation Professor of Medicine at the University of Otago Christchurch. He had also been Chair of the Canterbury District Health Board, a leader internationally in diabetes care and research, and an outstanding teacher of both undergraduate students and vocational trainees in medicine. The Beaven lecture theatre at the University of Otago Christchurch is named in recognition of his many contributions, and is graced with a portrait of Don done by Dr John Gillies, an Otago medical alumnus and clinician in Christchurch.
A public memorial service is to be held for Sir Don in Christchurch on Friday 18 December. The Canterbury District Health Board, the Christchurch City Council, Diabetes Christchurch Inc and the University of Otago will host the celebration at the Christchurch Town Hall on December 18 from 1.30pm.
A full obituary for Professor Sir Don Beaven can be viewed courtesy of the Dominion Post. Web link: http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/national/obituaries/3040887/The-modest-humanitarian-stirrer A statement by the Hon Tariana Turia can be viewed at: http://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/death+sir+don+beaven+039tragic+loss039
Dr Faafetai Sopoaga is the first Associate Dean, Pacific, appointed for the University of Otago’s Division of Health Sciences. As a senior lecturer in Pacific health, based in the Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Tai will be involved in encouraging and supporting Pacific students considering a career in health and enrolled in health professional programmes in the Division, as well as continuing with her own research.
Professor Barry Taylor, Head of Paediatrics and Child Health, and the Department of Women’s and Children’s Health, Dunedin School of Medicine, gave the Montgomery Spencer Memorial Oration at the New Zealand annual scientific meeting of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, in recognition of his contribution to child health as one of the countries leading paediatricians.
Professor Donald Evans of the Bioethics Centre has been elected President of the UNESCO International Bioethics Committee at its recent Mexico City meeting.
As part of this appointment Professor Evans will also be an ex-officio member of the World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology. Congratulations to Don: he is the first Bioethicist to occupy the position, and the first President from the Southern Hemisphere.
Professor Allan Herbison, Department of Physiology, Otago School of Medical Sciences was presented with the Health Research Council’s Liley medal for his outstanding contributions to scientific and health research.
Congratulations on Professorial promotions:
Six Professorial promotions within the Faculty of Medicine were announced recently. Congratulations from all in the Faculty to Iain Lamont, Annette Beautrais, Murray Barclay, Martin Kennedy, Rob McGee and Peter Herbison on their promotions.
Further information on each of their areas of interest, and on other promotions, is available at: http://www.otago.ac.nz/news/news/otago006216.html
New Skills Centres planned for Christchurch
Medical undergraduates in Christchurch will soon have access to a new purpose- designed clinical skills centre to cover the expanded clinical skills programme of the medical curriculum. The new centre will be in the same building as the Centre for Postgraduate Nursing Studies on Oxford Terrace, and should be up and running next year.
Clinical Skills Director Dr MaryLeigh Moore says the new teaching facility will be a significant learning resource;
“It is essentially an educational facility but will mimic as much as possible real health care settings. The intention is to provide opportunities for acquisition and repetitive practice of clinical skills in a safe simulated environment. The types of skills which can be learnt in a simulation setting include communication and consultation skills, procedural skills and management of complex scenarios requiring professional communication and team work.”
The decision to develop the new centre follows discussions with the Canterbury DHB and recognition that the existing unit is already operating to capacity and cannot meet growing demands and changing requirements under the new curriculum. As a result the University has decided to establish an additional facility focused primarily on University teaching requirements. The CDHB is early in its own planning process for major building work and this will provide opportunity to work together with the University in the longer term to develop shared facilities.
A new Clinical Skills Centre also for Dunedin School of Medicine
Planning is being finalised for a new clinical skills and ambulatory teaching centre for the Dunedin School of Medicine. This will be in the Fraser building of the Dunedin Hospital, at the site of the current shared facility with the Otago DHB. It will incorporate facilities for structured ambulatory patient clinical teaching, SECO clinics, and simulated clinical skills learning.
The final approvals should be completed in the next two weeks, and it is hoped the refurbishment and construction can commence early in the New Year.
Funding for these Clinical Skills developments has come from the increased TEC funding for medical students commencing in 2007.
IT – eLearning project updates. Moodle vs. Blackboard.
During the second semester of 2009, The ELM Year 2/3 Programme has been trialing Moodle in addition to the facilities available via Blackboard which has been the Campus wide on-line student learning management system for the past 10 years. The results of a student survey overwhelmingly approved of the trial and with the support of the FCC a decision has been made to use Moodle for the 2010 ELM Year 2 class. This trial will receive further evaluation and testing before any decision is made to use Moodle in Year 3 and possibly ALM.
ELM Review Day – 9 November.
This year the ELM Year 2/3 Programme devoted a day to reviewing the programmes of the past year, with a focus on Year 3 programme modules. The day was well attended by staff and students and covered a wide range of topics from timetables, assessment, balancing science with clinical application, defining the ideal tutor, clinical reasoning and how to improve the integration across the programme. The day was kindly facilitated by Prof Gil Barbezat. A full report will be circulated in the near future.
Medical Students Outcomes Database (MSOD).
The 2009 ELM Year 2 students recently completed the commencing questionnaire component of this Australasian Medical Dean’s research project. This year we had another excellent response rate with 99.6% of the class completing the on line survey of demographic, educational and career intentions at the start of their professional training. Otago has now collected 3 years of data from commencing students, contributing to the longitudinal tracking project that is now in its 5th Year. The latest edition of the MSOD newsletter highlights some of the first results being published from the data. The newsletter can be downloaded here or for further information on the Project, visit:
Student Awards and Graduation 2009
Assessments and examinations have been occurring across all parts of the Faculty in recent weeks, with almost all staff involved in marking, OSCEs, OSPEs, and Examination Committee meetings. Thank you to all involved.
There have been very successful prize and award giving functions in each of the Schools in the Faculty, and as always the Trainee Intern dinners have been great occasions.
The graduation ceremony for those in programmes in the Faculty of Medicine is in Dunedin on Saturday 12 December. The speaker at the Graduation Ceremony will be Dr Terrie Inder, a paediatrician who is an Otago alumna, and who is now Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Washington University in St Louis in the United States. Dr Terrie Inder is the co-director of the Washington University Neonatal Development Research (WUNDER) team, whose research aims to improve the outcomes for infants born at risk for adverse long-term neurodevelopment.
The Faculty of Medicine award ceremony is on the morning of Saturday 12 December, and the speaker will be Professor John Campbell, who was Dean of the Faculty of Medicine from 1995 – 2005, and who is currently the Chair of the Medical Council of New Zealand.
Rhodes Scholarship for Otago Graduate. Dr Tom Hills, who has just completed his Trainee Intern year at UOW, has been awarded a Rhodes scholarship and intends taking up the scholarship in September 2010. At Oxford he is planning to study for an MSc in Integrated Immunology leading to his eventual goal, a DPhil programme. Tom was a student in the Rural Medical Immersion Programme in 2008.
Donated to Science.
This outstanding documentary, which was screened on TV3, recently (18 November), has been the subject of much media attention. Dr Paul Trotman (Anatomy) and Prof Helen Nicholson (Dean of the Otago School of Medical Sciences) and the rest of the Dunedin production team focused not so much on the process of dissection, but also on the impact that the learning experience has on those involved.
An interview with Paul Trotman by Kim Hill on Radio NZ, can be heard at: http://www.radionz.co.nz/search?mode=results&queries_all_query=donated+to+science
Alumni website – net community – making it easier for your class to keep in touch. Further information see:
Research in Clinical Education
There has been an encouraging Division of Health Sciences response to a proposal for a Network and research meeting in clinical education. We are therefore pleased to announce that we will be launching the Network with a one-day colloquium in Dunedin on Wednesday 10 February 2010. The Network is designed to maximise opportunities for educators across the Division to share relevant clinical education research ideas in undergraduate and postgraduate settings, and to connect with potential collaborative partners.
The day will have three main components:
- Show and tell – where there is sharing of research interests so others can learn what is happening
- Problem solving session – where people can bring seek input from the group on ideas for potential research projects
- Wrap up session – making sense of it all and looking at the way forward.
The colloquium will take place:
Wednesday 10 February 2010
10am – 4.00 pm
Hunter Centre, University of Otago, Dunedin
For more information and to register your interest please go to:
If there is any information that you would like to be disseminated to the Faculty in mediNEWSotago, please contact Jacqui Bradshaw, Administrative Officer, Faculty of Medicine at email@example.com
Professor Don Roberton
Photos from Graduation 2009 • 12 December 2009
The following were take at the 2009 Medicine Award Ceremony prior to the Graduation Ceremony
Photography by Philip Tilson