New $49m Curtin Uni medical school opens

Colin Barnett chats among the new students.
Colin Barnett chats among the new students.

WESTERN Australia’s newest medical school has been unveiled at Curtin University, welcoming a cohort of 60 future doctors.

Offering an undergraduate Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery, the $49 million building was officially opened by Premier Colin Barnett at a ceremony attended by students, representatives of the Perth health services and medical sectors, state and local government, and private enterprise.

Curtin University Vice-Chancellor Deborah Terry said Curtin’s new five year, full-time Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery would allow graduates to meet the needs of currently under-serviced areas of health care, with a strong emphasis on primary care, chronic disease, ageing, indigenous and regional health.

“We are enormously proud to offer what will be the only undergraduate entry program available in Western Australia,” Professor Terry said.

“Our vision is to create highly competent doctors of the future who integrate into an inter-professional environment.

“This vision has been built on Curtin’s strong health sciences foundation, and on a philosophy of innovation and teaching excellence.”

Curtin’s Dean of Medicine Professor William Hart said the focus for the students would be on providing competent and compassionate medical care to people who currently have inadequate access to health care.

“We will train doctors to the highest standards of the Australian Medical Council, and they will be fit for internships and future specialisation anywhere in Australia, but we are excited to welcome applicants who see themselves as the Western Australian GPs of the future,” Prof Hart said.

Initial interest in the course attracted more than 1,500 applications for 60 places.

The intake will increase to 110 domestic places per year by 2022.

The Medical School building features purpose-built facilities inspired by a DNA fingerprint, designed to reflect the modern student experience.

A range of formal and informal learning spaces and clinical skills rooms were developed to represent the fundamental focus on people and health.