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Starting in Autumn Semester 2020, 40 students are expected to begin their Master's programme in Medicine in St.Gallen. A study, which examined several variants of medical studies in St.Gallen, brought the preliminary project to a conclusion in autumn 2016. "The Government prioritised the cooperation model with the University of Zurich and the St.Gallen Cantonal Hospital," says Jürg Felix, who was subsequently appointed project manager. The institutions involved are convinced that they will be able to create a pedagogically innovative and future-oriented programme in the Joint Medical Master in St.Gallen. "This is also reflected in the decision of the Conference of Swiss Universities (SHK), which approved the St.Gallen project in the context of the start-up funding initiative for an increase in the number of degrees in medicine," says Jürg Felix.
In the meantime, the two working groups "Curriculum" and "Cantonal Legislation" have defined more foundations. The latter, which is headed by General Counsel Hildegard Kölliker, prepared the amendment to the University Act. "If everything goes according to plan, the St.Gallen Cantonal Government will adopt the dispatch in August 2017," says Jürg Felix. The debate on the University Act in the Cantonal Parliament should be concluded by spring 2018.
"In February 2017, interest in the
Joint Medical Master in St.Gallen was confirmed"
The "Curriculum" working group, which is headed by a representative of the Cantonal Hospital, drew up a rough concept of the curriculum. The Master's programme will continue where the undergraduate education of the University of Zurich leaves off. Clinical training will start as early as the 3rd undergraduate semester, and students of the Master's programme will undertake it in St.Gallen. Three specialisations will be an integral component of the curriculum: Primary Health Care, Interprofessionality, and Marketing and Governance. These will be taught throughout the programme.
The foundations thus defined were required to ensure that the administrative units of the various institutions could be involved in the project. "At a kick-off event with representatives of the Cantonal Hospital, the University of Zurich and the HSG we collected questions which will have to be answered from an administrative perspective in the context of the project," says Jürg Felix. These questions will be taken into account in the project missions of the individual working groups, which are currently being drawn up.
The institutions involved were excited when swissuniversities opened the registration window for new medical students in December 2016. "In February 2017, interest in the Joint Medical Master in St.Gallen was confirmed," says Jürg Felix. 86 prospective students have applied for the 40 places of the Master's programme. Before they are able to start their studies in the "St.Gallen track" at the University of Zurich, they will have to pass an aptitude test for medical studies. "Whether the new Master's programme can be offered in St.Gallen from autumn 2020 will be decided by St.Gallen's voting population in 2018."