BVI News

BVI signs CARICOM agreement to establish medical schools

Education Minister, Dr Natalio Wheatley

Premier Andrew Fahie has inked an agreement to establish medical schools in the British Virgin Islands.

According to a February 18 media release from the Office of the Premier, the agreement was signed with the Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Medicine and other Health Professionals (CAAM-HP) under CARICOM.

“It is now official! After years of pursuit, today while attending the 31st Inter-Sessional Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of CARICOM in Barbados I also took the time on behalf of the BVI to sign an agreement for us as a territory to establish medical schools through the Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Medicine and other Health Professionals,” Premier Fahie stated.

He said this new milestone achievement is one which will generate a number of benefits for the economy of the BVI.

“This is good news as well as it will create more opportunities for our people of the BVI in many areas such as rental of apartments, need for increased forms of transportation, scholarships to study medicine at home, adding value to our healthcare – an overall boost to our economy,” Premier Fahie explained.

Agreement also signed with CXC

The release further said that Premier Fahie, while at the meeting, also signed an agreement with the Caribbean Examination Council which outlines the BVI’s membership in the organisation.

The agreement also outlines the benefits the territory will receive as a member, which includes: “free training for teachers, reduced fees for our examinations and a stake in the direction of the organisation.”

The Premier said the agreements were made possible thanks to the work of Education Minister Dr Natalio Wheatley and involved public officers.

Other medical school agreements in the BVI

This is the second agreement signed by a government of the British Virgin Islands to establish a medical facility in the territory.

The first was approved by Cabinet under the NDP Administration in 2018, to establish the University of Science Arts and Technology — which was later renamed to the University of Health & Humanities, Virgin Islands — in the BVI.

BVI News was last made to understand in September 2019 by Minister Dr Wheatley, that the new medical facility was awaiting renovations to be completed at its James Young Harbour View Marina campus in East End, Tortola.

We were further informed that the school was also awaiting accreditation from the Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Education in Medicine and other Health Professions (CAAM-HP), before it could begin operations.

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18 Comments

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  1. Michael Helm says:

    Good news, furtherdiversification of the BVI economy, seperate from hospitality,sailing and cruise ships.

    Like 1
    Dislike 6
    • @Michael says:

      It is good to diversify but it’s also important to do it the right way. Teaching through a credit action system for the Caribbean alone is a waste. The BVI should be looking to attract US and U.K. accreditation where REAL doctors and nurses can study. The BVI has sufficient substandard healthcare. It needs first world health care so that the people don’t need to run to the US or Europe for anything more than a cold

      Like 9
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      • You are an Ahh says:

        How many persons go to caribbean schools to study? when you have victims that you can’t treat where do you send them when you can’t go abroad? You people are sickening.When you get injured and can’t be treated here make sure you can go straight to America. Don’t even say Puerto Rico you should hope they don’t have an earthquake from fracking on that very day, okay?.. If you can’t make it let them keep you here okay?.

  2. Socrates says:

    No doubt establishing medical schools in the VI comes with benefits and advantages, ie, students staying at home, lowering cost for students, opportunity to train more doctors, increasing the number of doctors and number of specialists, reducing government investment in medical training without reducing the number of students, boost in real estate business………etc. Nonetheless, there are a number questions:

    1. There are number of other regional medical schools in the region so will the BVI in competition for their medical school students:Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Aruba, Barbados, Belize, Cayman Islands, Curacao, Dominica, Santo Domingo, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & Grenadines, Sint Martin and Trinidad & Tobago?
    2. If a previous medical school was already established (University of Health & Humanities, Virgin Islands — in the BVI, why another one?
    3. Where will the main campus be located?
    4. Will the main campus have dormitories?
    5. Will the university just be providing general medical training or specialty training?
    6. During a disaster, ie, hurricane…..etc who will be responsible for evacuating students?
    7. Will the school be accredited and by whom?
    8. Will graduates be able to easily practice in UK, Canada, US?
    9. Will a local medical school make it easier to recruit and retain doctors
    10. A medical school campus in a marina in James (Jimmy )Young?

    Like 13
    Dislike 1
    • No says:

      The students will not be able to practice in the US, UK or any other Country as the level of medical training provided in schools in the US and other first world countries is far beyond what is provided in the Caribbean. Second, only the best and brightest students are able to attend medical schools and have to show their proficiency. The witch doctor schools in the Caribbean that allow anyone in with enough money to pay or are from a ruling family doesn’t mean that they have the grey matter to become physicians. Get a grip and stop the nonsense. This is a total waste and you’ll end up with so called doctors that no one should allow to remove a pimple from ones arse.

      Like 11
      Dislike 4
      • @No says:

        @No, Socrates ask the ?& you provided an answer. You answered as followed: “ The students will not be able to practice in the US, UK or any other Country as the level of medical training provided in schools in the US and other first world countries is far beyond what is provided in the Caribbean.” However, IMO, your answer was broad, too generalized and not totally factual.

        Hundreds of students who have graduated from Caribbean medical schools ( not talking about UWI graduates) have come back to the US, completed their residencies, passed medical licensing exams and licensed to practice medicine in the US. I personally know a few who graduated from Ross University when it was located in Dominica. Confident that the same scenario is occurring in the UK, Canada and elsewhere.

        Moreover, not every graduate from medical schools in advanced countries are good doctors and the same is true for Caribbean med schools. Should every small dot in the Caribbean Sea have a med school? Probably not. Every dot should evaluate its personal situation, assess the environment and decide. True, medical schools should not be rolled out for political talking points; they should be started based on either an absolute or comparative advantage. Nonetheless, I will take a WAG that hospitals in advanced countries are staffed with doctors who are graduates of external universities, ie, India……etc.

      • Who mashed your corn? says:

        You sound angry already. Nothing is in place as yet, however you are able to work yourself up based on your imagination to start cussing. Well sah. That’s messed up!!!!! Abortionist!!! Dream killer!!!!

  3. TurtleDove says:

    I could be so wrong on this….but I have a hard time seeing/acknowledging a medical school when we cant get water, sewage, electricity and transportation fix.

    Like 13
    • Really!!! says:

      “Witch doctor schools!!!” I am puzzled at two levels. Firstly, “witch doctors” is a demeaning western label associated with practitioners of mysterious but effective scientific healing practices in Africa. So, you are essentially complimenting Caribbean Medical schools since the first known brain surgeries etc were done successfully by African “witch” doctors. Secondly, most of the doctors who have been serving us in the BVI for decades were trained in Caribbean medical schools. And by the way, let us not forget Cuba which continues to produce some of the best doctors in the world. Anyway, I guess “NO,” you will consider this opinion as third world thinking. Well! Proud to be part of the oppressed as against the oppressive nations!!! And I refuse to be brain-washed!!!

      Like 8
      Dislike 3
      • @Really says:

        First, the Doctors serving you in the BVI are third world at best. They are no more trained to handle complicated matters than a grocery store clerk. They do know how to charge though. Second, your Doctors arrive at Caribbean medical schools from high schools that couldn’t compete with middle schoolers from the US or U.K. Thus the level of education and IQ is just not there to be able to train a good qualified physician. Last, if what I say is not the truth then why you all run off the island when you have a serious medical issue. Stay home and let your Caribbean trained Doctor’s treat your asses.

        Like 3
        Dislike 7
        • Really!!! says:

          I respectfully suggest “No” that you research other education paradigms outside of the USA. Check the world ranking. I doubt whether your bold pronouncements are backed by empirical evidence. Remember, “Third World” is an economic, not a literacy marker.

          Like 6
          Dislike 1
    • Here we go again says:

      In Lavity day you would have had a hard time see HLSCC also

  4. Really!!! says:

    “Witch doctor schools!!!” I am puzzled at two levels. Firstly, “witch doctors” is a demeaning western label associated with practitioners of mysterious but effective scientific healing practices in Africa. So, you are essentially complimenting Caribbean Medical schools since the first known brain surgeries etc were done successfully by African “witch” doctors. Secondly, most of the doctors who have been serving us in the BVI for decades were trained in Caribbean medical schools. And by the way, let us not forget Cuba which continues to produce some of the best doctors in the world. Anyway, I guess “NO,” you will consider this opinion as third world thinking. Well! Proud to be part of the oppressed as against the oppressive nations!!! And I refuse to be brain-washed!!!

  5. Fed up of this nonsense says:

    Some of you guys are like Spanish women who can’t create their own man but could only look around to see a man that another woman done invest in to a point of success. We can build a successful medical school, from ground up. One that will be the model in the Caribbean.

    • Uhm says:

      You sound like a spanish woman took your man. Quite bitter.I’m not even spanish and I find that a offensive…Some of you should just keep your comments.

  6. Ausar says:

    Great news, Premier Fahie!

    Just what we need to take the country into another next phase of an economical pillar!

    And as for national acceptance; Listen, if Cuban docters can become licensed and practicing physicians in America, I just can’t see why our country cannot produce similar professionals, worthy of such a status!

    Like 1
    Dislike 3
  7. Aaron Pacey says:

    I think its a great news for Medical school students. Quality of education is right of every student specially those who are enrolled in universities for higher education. Windsor School of medicine is of its kind to provide quality of education in Caribbean.

  8. THINK! says:

    What about a nursing school? Nurses working 12 hour shifts is not good for them or the patients.

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