In 2006, the University of Manitoba Department of Family Medicine and Shantou University Medical College (SUMC) in Shantou, China established a scholarly exchange project as part of the existing Academic Exchange between our two institutions. This project has provided a platform for the mutual sharing of knowledge and expertise in medical education, particularly in areas specific to the discipline of family medicine. It is funded through endowments from the Li Ka Shing Foundation and Husky Energy with additional support from the Department of Family Medicine.
SUMC Medical Student Visits
Since the project’s inception, 34 SUMC medical students have participated in annual six to eight week educational exposures at the University of Manitoba.
Their activities have included:
- Clinical exposures at urban family medicine teaching units, rural teaching sites and emergency departments
- Participation in formal undergraduate and postgraduate teaching sessions in conjunction with family medicine residents and U of M clerkship students
- Visits to rural and Aboriginal communities
- Individualized teaching with U of M faculty
- Student presentations at the Department of Family Medicine’s International Interest Group Night
Department of Family Medicine Scholarly Exchange Visits
Since 2007, our department has directly contributed to educational activities at SUMC through ongoing exchange visits to Shantou. This includes including the annual one month “Team Manitoba” visit, in which 16 clinical faculty and nine family medicine residents have participated thus far.
Exchange activities have included:
- Assistance with faculty development and teaching in family medicine training at both the postgraduate and undergraduate levels
- Development and implementation of teaching sessions for SUMC students incorporating small group and problem based learning concepts
- Development and implementation of faculty development workshops, panel discussions and teaching demonstrations for SUMC clinical faculty in small group and problem based learning, medical English and North American teaching and learning styles
- Individualized teaching consultations with SUMC clinical faculty
- Evening lectures to SUMC faculty and students on the Canadian medical system and medical education
Shantou University/University of Manitoba Family Medicine Centre
In response to 2010 national government directive for primary care development in the People’s Republic of China, SUMC and the UM have worked collaboratively to develop the discipline of family medicine at SUMC. In 2015 SUMC and Shantou’s First Affiliated Hospital opened the Shantou University/University of Manitoba Family Medicine Centre. This community based centre has been purpose built to provide primary care to its surrounding community and family medicine training at both a postgraduate and undergraduate level.
Collaborative activities have included:
- Development and implementation of extended capacity building workshops in family medicine in 2015 and 2016, in collaboration with the CFPC Besrour Centre,
- A three week consultation visit by UM DFM physicians and nursing faculty in March 2016
- A two week consultation visit by SUMC family medicine leadership at UM teaching units and primary care centres in May 2015
The UM DFM will continue to act as consultants in capacity building and faculty development for physicians and allied health providers at the Centre, with ongoing exchange visits between both partners.
Joint U of M/SUMC Activities
Department of Family Medicine faculty and residents have played an active role in broader exchange activities, including:
- Assistance during SUMC faculty exchange visits to the U of M
- Assistance and representation at joint U of M/SUMC symposia and other educational events
- Participation in national China-Canada initiatives in family medicine development and education
- Research activities regarding the impact of elective experiences on students’ career choices and attitudes to patient care
The exchange project demonstrates a model in which relatively small academic departments with limited resources can contribute to medical education and the promotion of family medicine at an international level. Based on ongoing positive project outcomes, the Department of Family Medicine and SUMC will continue with gradual expansion of the exchange’s educational and research activities, with a particular focus on the new SUMC/UM Family Medicine Centre.