The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada takes lead on national
initiative to support Haiti

OTTAWA, June 23 /CNW Telbec/ - On May 26, 2010, the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC) convened a groundbreaking meeting in Montreal of approximately 50 individuals representing Haitian faculties of medicine and government departments, Canadian faculties of medicine as well as Canadian and American stakeholders in an effort to develop a proposal for a 6-year project that will help Haiti's four faculties of medicine rebuild and revitalize their curriculum following the devastating earthquake of January 12th.

The objective of the meeting was to examine the current state of medical training in Haiti, identify priority support initiatives in light of the effects of the earthquake, develop proposed solutions to meet urgent needs, and draft an action plan that responds to the self-identified needs of Haitian faculties to revitalize their training programs and rebuild medical training.

"This is an urgent need in Haiti; if we do not help Haiti at this juncture to resume medical training as soon as possible, the effects of the earthquake will extend well into the future in terms of their medical workforce," said Dr. Nick Busing, President and CEO of the association. "Haiti already had significant health human resource challenges; losing a full year of training, if not more, is simply not something we can allow to happen there".

After an intense day of presentations and exchange, participants at the meeting signed "the Montreal Declaration".

    Be it resolved that:

    -   the stakeholders in attendance recognize the need to share an
        inclusive vision on the issue of medical training reform in Haiti;
    -   the four faculties of medicine working in Haiti, both public and
        private, confirm their willingness to work together to face the
        challenges related to medical training in Haiti;
    -   the Canadian and American partners and members of La Francophonie
        that are interested in supporting the faculties of medicine in Haiti
        confirm their willingness to unite and coordinate their efforts;
    -   the stakeholders in attendance confirm the necessity to define the
        needs and strategies related to medical training in Haiti under
        the leadership of Haitian stakeholders;
    -   the stakeholders in attendance agree that new pilot initiatives are
        relevant, as long as they are developed to support overall medical
        training in Haiti;
    -   the stakeholders also agree on the urgency of obtaining support from
        the higher political powers in Haiti for the approach initiated in
        Montreal as well as for the federative binational project initiated
        by the AFMC to help Haitian faculties of medicine.

On June 30th 2010, the AFMC will be sending a delegation to Haiti to continue the process of developing its proposal to be presented to the Federal government. "It is my sincere hope that the Canadian government will act nimbly and quickly to approve funding this project" said Dr. Busing. "So much good can be done with a relatively modest amount of funding; it would be an incredible shame if Canada did not rise to this challenge".

    The following organizations are signatories to the Montreal Declaration:

    -   Faculté de Médecine et de Pharmacie, Université d'État d'Haïti
    -   Faculté de médecine et des sciences de la santé, Université Notre
        Dame d'Haïti
    -   Faculté des sciences de la santé, Université Quisqueya (Haiti)
    -   Faculté de médecine et des sciences de la santé, Université Lumière
    -   Commission présidentielle nationale de la santé (Haiti)
    -   Ministère de la santé publique et de la population (Haiti)
    -   Association médicale haitienne
    -   Hôpital de l'Université d'État d'Haiti
    -   The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada
    -   Association des médecins haitiens à l'étranger
    -   Faculty of Medicine, Université de Montréal
    -   Faculty of Medicine, Université de Sherbrooke
    -   Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada
    -   The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada
    -   The College of Family Physicians of Canada
    -   US Inter-university Consortium (University of Chicago, Dartmouth
        University, University of Illinois, Maryland University, University
        of Miami, University of Nebraska, University of Pennsylvania,
        University of Southern California, Tulane University)
    -   Conférence Internationale des Doyens et des Facultés de Médecine
        d'Expression Française/Université Médicale Virtuelle Francophone
    -   KUNAK Foundation

SOURCE Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC)

For further information: For further information: Irving Gold, Vice President, Government Relations and External Affairs, The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada, (613) 730-0687 x236,

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Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC)

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