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UVI’s School of Medicine Accreditation Visit

University of the Virgin Islands School of Medicine stock photo

The University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) will host a preliminary accreditation survey visit by the Liaison Committee for Medical Education (LCME) for its School of Medicine on May 31 to June 4. A team of four people representing the LCME will examine the School of Medicine’s educational programs, leadership, facilities and faculty. They will also examine the school’s clinical affiliates – the Roy L. Schneider Hospital and the East End Medical Center on St. Thomas, and the Juan F. Luis Hospital and the Frederiksted Health Care, Inc. on St. Croix. The team consists of three senior academic physicians and an executive from the LCME.

“This is a major step towards our goal of becoming the only English-speaking LCME accredited medical school in the Caribbean,” stated UVI President David Hall. “If we are able to demonstrate to the visitors that the University and the Territory are ready and able to sustain a first-class medical school, then the future of medical care for the people of the Virgin Islands would be on an upward trajectory for years to come,” Dr. Hall continued.  

V.I. Governor Kenneth Mapp, at both UVI Commencement Ceremonies, indicated his full support of the medical school. “After looking at all of the issues regarding the medical school – its financing, its ability to operate, its ability to construct its facilities and more importantly its ability to deliver towards the improvement of the health care system in the Virgin Islands and produce competent and high-end physicians – Lt. Gov. Potter and I are fully onboard,” Gov. Mapp said. “We look forward to working with you (Dr. Hall) and the University family, as with the people of the Virgin Islands, to ensure that this next chapter for the University of the Virgin Islands be as bright and successful for the people of the Virgin Islands as this University moves forward in opening, operating, running a medical school and producing top-rate physicians,” he continued.

Dr. Benjamin Sachs, interim dean of the School of Medicine, said UVI is preparing intensively for the visit. “The LCME accreditation application was over 1,500 pages and we are ensuring that faculty are familiar with all areas relative to their responsibilities,” Dr. Sachs said. “I am confident in our team’s ability to represent UVI well and impress our visitors,” he said. “We are very fortunate to have been selected for accreditation candidacy and to have three very distinguished academic physicians from across the country visit UVI,” Dr. Sachs added.

In anticipation of the official survey visit, UVI hosted a simulated survey visit in early May.

The LCME will make a decision regarding UVI’s School of Medicine preliminary accreditation at its October meeting. If granted preliminary accreditation, the School of Medicine can begin to recruit students for the fall 2016 semester. The design and planning is already underway for the construction of a classroom building on St. Thomas and a simulation center on St. Croix.

The LCME is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as the reliable authority for the accreditation of medical education programs leading to doctor of medicine degrees. UVI plans to build a Territory-wide School of Medicine that will be certified by the LCME, making it the only LCME-accredited English-speaking medical school in the Caribbean.

In April 2014, the UVI Board of Trustees approved the development phase for a medical school in the territory. That same month global entrepreneur Dr. Chirinjeev Kathuria, on behalf of New Generation Power, made a $30 million gift commitment to the School of Medicine. UVI submitted accreditation documents to the LCME in November 2014. The LCME named UVI a candidate school in February.

For more information contact the Public Relations Office at (340) 693-1057 or pr@uvi.edu.