Jeopardising a Hippocratic tradition

David P Weller, Richard F Heller and Konrad Jamrozik
Med J Aust 2004; 181 (11): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2004.tb06513.x
Published online: 6 December 2004

What’s needed in medical education are new and big ideas, coupled with a dose of investment

In the 18th century, doctors had no particular qualifications and their education was gained as an apprentice to a master. Maybe this wasn’t such a bad idea — students today find themselves increasingly on the fringe of a system that has lost its enthusiasm for imparting wisdom to its young people, despite this imperative being enshrined in the Hippocratic Oath. The UK’s General Medical Council still has high expectations of medical schools: early contact with patients; patient-centred communication skills; courses rich in ethics, culture and ethnicity; and more training taking place in the community. It champions curricula that produce caring, knowledgeable, confident and competent medical graduates who have a broad understanding of health and disease in individuals, their families and society.

  • David P Weller1
  • Richard F Heller2
  • Konrad Jamrozik3

  • 1 Department of General Practice, Division of Community Health Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
  • 2 Evidence for Population Health Unit, School of Epidemiology and Health Sciences, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK.
  • 3 Department of Primary Care and Social Medicine, Imperial College, London, UK.



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