University of Alicante to offer an undergraduate degree in Medicine in the academic year 2018-2019
University of Alicante Manuel Palomar announced during the presentation of the Royal Academy of Medicine Honour Medal to the University for its “pioneering work in the implementation of a medical degree”
Alicante. Friday, 3 February 2017
On Thursday, the Valencia Region Royal Academy of Medicine (RAMCV) presented its traditional Medal of Honour to the University of Alicante in a ceremony held at the university venue in Alicante 'San Fernando 40' in recognition of its “interest and dedication to health sciences and, especially, of the creation of the Faculty of Medicine in 1979”.
The event was chaired over by University of Alicante President Manuel Palomar and attended by RAMCV Chairman and Deputy Chairman Antonio Llombart and Justo Medrano respectively, as well as by Alfonso Puchades, who was the only Dean of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Alicante before its segregation.
In his speech, Palomar thanked the RAMCV the recognition, "a distinction that recognises the effort and commitment of so many professionals who participated in the implementation of medical studies in the province, with innovative teaching/learning methodologies and excellent results in the MIR examinations. "
The UA President referred to one of the saddest episodes of the University, the segregation of the Faculty of Medicine, "the principle of university autonomy was somehow violated and one of our founding faculties with recognised prestigious teaching and research activity was snatched from us without sufficient reason, with several hundreds of scholars with relevant research ongoing projects. A traumatic decision, as evidenced by the fact that it has been the only case in the entire Spanish State in the 800 years of university history in this country so far."
"Therefore, we were hit, injured, but not sunk or discouraged", recalling thereafter the achievements of the University of Alicante in the field of health sciences, nursing and nutrition studies, as well as in the fields of chemistry, biology and biotechnology, medicine, nursing, community health, public health and information technology applied to health. Palomar also emphasised "the greatest researchers and research teams at the highest level" and put on the table a unique example, "microbiologist Francis Mojica, from our university, candidate for the Nobel Prize in Medicine for his revolutionary CRISPR technology, for many, the most relevant contribution to Medicine in the 21st century".
In this sense, the UA President recalled the important demand for medical studies at present and highlighted the future of "health tourism" and the leading role of Alicante in this regard, ensuring that " the University of Alicante does not renounce playing in the major university leagues, whose agents invariably count on a Faculty of Medicine. Nor is our university resigned to staying in a “comfort zone”, as in the one it is for the time being. Let alone being willing to renounce its responsibilities regarding the economic, social and cultural development of the province that gives it meaning and sustenance.
"We have the structure, the human capital and sufficient facilities to host this new Faculty equipped with highly qualified researchers and experts. A demographic threshold that justifies it. And an economic ecosystem, an "atmosphere", an "environment", which is given by the productive specialisation of the province and the emergence of spontaneous initiatives, in various major fields of study in different municipalities, which sets the perfect context to its implementation", the president said before announcing that "our Departments of Health Sciences and Science intend to draft a new curriculum for the undergraduate degree in Medicine before the summer to be accredited by ANECA so that it can be implemented in the academic course 2018-2019."
Alfonso Puchades, the only dean of the once University of Alicante Faculty of Medicine, recalled in his speech the ups and downs carried out for the implementation of medical studies in Alicante "with the interest and involvement of the various economic, social and political agents of the time."
Vice Chairman of the Royal Academy of Medicine Justo Medrano, stressed that "the RAMCV grants only few Medals of Honour and this is the first granted in our province. Well aware of the scientific reality of our region, the Royal Academy agreed unanimously to grant this medal to the University of Alicante, not only for its collaboration, but especially to highlight the creation, constitution and development of the first Faculty of Medicine in our province."
Medrano stressed the "high level" reached in medical studies in "our University", where MIR exam results are ranked in "the first positions" and called for "reflection on the validity of the once decreed segregation" now that the "intended mission of starting of the UMH is fulfilled".
RAMCV Chairman Antonio Llombart stated that "this award aims to be a recognition towards the city of Alicante and its University, as well as to those who devoted themselves to the difficult implementation of these studies during the first stage."