Am­bi­tious pro­pos­als for world­class med­i­cal school sub­mit­ted

Kentish Gazette Canterbury & District - - Front Page - By Joe Wright [email protected]­m­group.co.uk

Bold plans to build Kent’s firstever med­i­cal school in Can­ter­bury have been re­vealed - with bosses hop­ing the city can be­come a bea­con for world-class health­care train­ing.

The vi­sion - which bagged gov­ern­ment fund­ing last March - is a joint project be­tween the Univer­sity of Kent and Can­ter­bury Christ Church Univer­sity.

Ed­u­ca­tion and med­i­cal chiefs de­vel­oped the pro­pos­als through­out 2018, be­fore draw­ing up de­tailed plans for a state-of-theart ‘hy­brid pow­ered’ school.

Called the Kent and Med­way Med­i­cal School (KMMS), it is hoped the project will play an es­sen­tial role in rec­ti­fy­ing the re­gion’s prob­lem with the re­cruit­ing and re­tain­ing hos­pi­tal staff.

If given the go- ahead, the 2,500sqm build­ing will be erected in Park Wood Road on the city’s Univer­sity of Kent cam­pus.

Planned for com­ple­tion in Au­gust 2020, the school will of­fer five-year un­der­grad­u­ate pro­grammes, re­sult­ing in joint de­grees from both in­sti­tu­tions in Bach­e­lor of Medicine and Bach­e­lor of Surgery.

Sup­ported by Brighton and Sus­sex Med­i­cal School as a ‘par­ent part­ner’ in­sti­tu­tion, a to­tal of 150 stu­dent places will be avail­able at Can­ter­bury to be­gin with, be­fore in­creas­ing to 300.

The scheme, which will re­sult in the loss of 14 trees dur­ing con­struc­tion, has gained sig­nif­i­cant sup­port from MPS, coun­cil­lors and NHS Trust chief ex­ec­u­tives.

The pro­posed three- storey build­ing at the Univer­sity of Kent, which will boast a 150-seat lec­ture theatre and a num­ber of sem­i­nar rooms, will sup­ply the school’s gen­eral teach­ing fa­cil­i­ties where stu­dents will fo­cus on pa­tient-cen­tred care.

Spe­cial­ist prac­ti­cal teach­ing fa­cil­i­ties will then be ac­com­mo­dated at the CCCU cam­pus in a new Sci­ence & En­gi­neer­ing com­plex which is cur­rently un­der con­struc­tion.

A plan­ning state­ment com­piled by project agent Sav­ills, which says the level of teach­ing will be world-class, reads: “The uni­ver­si­ties’ am­bi­tion is to de­velop a school that will be­come a bea­con for first class med­i­cal ed­u­ca­tion and re­search and the first choice for those as­pir­ing to achieve ex­cel­lence in per­son-cen- tred med­i­cal care in the UK.

“By pro­vid­ing dis­tinc­tive, so­cially di­verse and in­sight­ful grad­u­ates, the school will en­able, in­flu­ence and drive changes within the clin­i­cal workforce to de­liver high qual­ity health­care and will also be an es­sen­tial part of the so­lu­tion for re­cruit­ing and re­tain­ing med­i­cal pro­fes­sion­als in Kent.”

Project bosses hope the ap­pli­ca­tion will be given the green light by Can­ter­bury City Coun­cil be­fore the end of March, so that the pro­posed sum­mer 2020 launch date can be achieved.

n What do you think of the plans? Email ken­[email protected] thek­m­group.co.uk.

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