andreascharalambousDear Faculty, Staff and Students,

The launch of MedNews allows us to share news, views and ideas; something that will enhance the existing internal communication channels of our Medical School.

This is a milestone year in the life of the Medical School; next May, we will graduate the first cohort of students receiving the St George’s, University of London Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (SGUL) MBBS-4 degree. We are justifiably proud of our students who have worked very hard to achieve their dreams of becoming doctors and for being the trailblazers.

This academic year also saw the introduction of two new degree programmes, a 6-Year Doctor of Medicine and an 18-month MSc in Family Medicine, under the degree granting powers of the University of Nicosia Medical School.  We feel confident that these two new programmes will prove to be as successful as our original programme, the SGUL MBBS-4.

The growth of programmes and student numbers brought expansion to facilities as well.  Since last September most faculty and staff of the School are housed in the Centre for Primary Care and Population Health, a new state-of-the-art building located at the south side of the University of Nicosia campus.  Plans are underway for expanding Block A and Block B facilities.    We have also added equipment to the Clinical Skills labs, provided more cadavers for the Anatomy Lab and expanded the selection of books for the Medical Library.

To ensure better communication and integration in the delivery of all of our programmes, the University of Nicosia Council ratified last summer the restructuring of the Medical School with the development of five Clinical Departments and two Centres, which will also facilitate clinical research and training between our local and international partner hospitals and the exchange of faculty.  A special Med News edition will be circulated before the end of 2014 announcing the appointments of the Foundation Chairs of the Departments and the Centres.

The Medical School Research Committee has been very active in promoting research at our institution.  You will notice that one of the stories in the current edition is about the research success of Dr Avgis Hadjipapas in the Human Brain Project, one of the largest EU-funded research initiatives. Through the work of Dr Hadjipapas, the Medical School is one of 32 institutions in 13 countries to be involved in this project.

Another story in the current edition is the hosting of MRCS exams for the Royal College of Surgeons of England.  The Medical School has a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the College under which the School was established as a regional centre for postgraduate courses and examinations of the College.  Another growing relationship is with the Royal College of General Practitioners and we are working together to ensure the successful delivery and quality assurance for the MSc in Family Medicine in Cyprus and in the region.

This is an exciting and creative time in the life of the Medical School. Our greatest resource remains our faculty, students and staff, and our progress is a testament to the hard work of everyone.