08 June, 2009

Medical School

St James School of Medicine. My attention was caught by a throw-away line in Victor’s recent speech, published a few days ago on this blog as “Golf Course”. Right at the end of the speech he said, “and, the long awaited Medical School is scheduled to open in August/September and will create opportunities for the apartment rental sector and other businesses. That was it. No further explanation.

I went off to do a little research on the internet.

The Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Education in Medicine and Other Health Professionals would be the agency responsible for authorizing such a school. This Authority is the officially recognized institution for accrediting medical schools in the West Indies. It has existed since the year 2004 when the British General Medical Council abandoned us and went off to be fully integrated into Europe. The Authority has a website. I went to visit it. There are eight medical schools listed as having applied to the Authority for accreditation. Some of the schools have achieved full accreditation, while others are only provisionally accredited. I had a look at the details for each of them. I learned that these appear to range from No 1, the University of the West Indies to No 8, the University of the West Indies School of Veterinary Medicine. No 4 is the St James School of Medicine.

So, I went to the “details” page to learn what it had to say about the assessment of the Anguilla project. I found the following from the year 2007:

I note that Sir Graeme Catto and Professor ER Waldrond are the two persons who carried out the Anguilla assessment. Professor Sir Graeme Catto is well-known as the President of the General Medical Council of the UK. He is a Scottish doctor, Professor of Medicine at the University of Aberdeen, Vice-Principal of King’s College and St Thomas’ Hospital Medical and Dental School. Professor ER “Mickey” Waldrond is a distinguished professor of medicine at UWI. This is a very serious team. Their recommendation that the school be given provisional accreditation must be given weight. The St James School was obviously not considered by them to be a fly-by-night operation.

But, I note that this 2007 assessment is only provisional. The assessment team was to have visited in six months time to see how the school was progressing in setting up the facilities for the admission of the first class of students. Did they ever pay this second visit? I cannot find any report of their later assessment, if it ever took place.

I do a little more exploring. I learn that the St James School of Medicine already has a West Indian operation. It has functioned in the island of Bonaire since 2001. YouTube even has a video about it. I find a few grouches posting negative things on various blogs. I find some doubt that the qualifications they give are acceptable in various States of the USA. Then, I go to their website.

I find something odd about the banner at the top of their home page. I say to myself, “Hold on, is that not a view of Road Bay in Anguilla taken from South Hill?”

It may be a minor thing, but I wonder to myself why would they want to illustrate a web page about a school in Bonaire with a picture of a bay in Anguilla.

I ask myself, is the plan to close down the Bonaire medical school and transfer all courses to Anguilla. What would cause them to take such a step?

Is Victor right that this school is about to start up in Anguilla in September?

If so, where is it going to be?

How come I have not heard of any activity on the island relating to the school since provisional approval was given in 2007?

It is all a complete mystery to me.


  1. A medical school? Are you kidding me? Anguilla can't teach children the 3 r's, but they'll drag in a couple of MD's to "learn" some folks in medicine? I think I've heard it all now. The best doctor on the island is Filipino, maybe that's the place to learn. - Scotty

  2. A friend of a friend wispered Inter Island hotel.....

  3. They are teaching anatomy. That requires having a human body, preferably already dead, to cut up. Normally, six students share one cadaver, so if the school does well, they'll need a whole crowd of bodies.

    Has this new school made some arrangement with the hospital, or with one of our enterprising youth gangs, to supply the required materials?

  4. I live in Bonaire. I would love to know if they are moving on and out..so far I don't think so...

    Their presence will not impact the education of your island. It will fill up many apartments and drive of the rental costs for locals. Housing as a result of TWO medical schools on an island of 15k has become scarce. Most students are respectable and studious but there are a few bad apples that have indeed tarnished their reputation making some landlords wary to rent to students. I have met quite a few students and they have been great. 3 moved in across the street. Fingers crossed.

  5. They were probably just doing what Stanford did to Lester Bird of Antigua seven or eight years ago. Stanford wanted to operate the VC Bird Airport. Lester was stalling. Stanford went to see Dr Douglas of St Kitts. He told him he was moving his headquarters from Antigua. He would build his new headquarters in St Kitts. Dr Douglas told him to go ahead. Stanford started his fancy new building on the St Kitts Airport grounds. Lester caved in and gave him what he wanted. The St Kitts building lies there unoccupied to this day.

    I wonder what they got from the Bonaire government that they wanted.

    My bet is there is no chance of them coming to Anguilla.

  6. Another Anguilla "pipe dream" eh? Too many Anguillians spend all their time wishing for get-rich-schemes or rich white women to pay their way. When are they going to realize that all that got going for them is their own resources. Roll up the sleeves and get to work & make their own way. No... That means they would have to work. Much easier to wait for the millions to drop in their laps. Bound to come eventually. Lord knows they are deserving. They "born here"
    I'm getting tired of hearing about how rich foreignors are going to come in to poor little Anguilla and create wonderful opportunities and spread money around like it goin' out of style. What happened to Anguilla pride and Anguilla ingenuity. Why can't Anguillians come up with the projects themselves. Could it be that Anguillians can't trust each other cause they know how they would shaft their brother to get ahead of him?

  7. Economics (or finance exploited by force monopoly, as I like to joke) isn't called the dismal science for nothing.

    One of the problems with waiting for foreigners, rich or otherwise, to show up and make you rich is that you have to actually *let* them show up, work, produce something, and *keep* it. Wealth comes from the creation of property. Property is created by the application of valuable mind over previously unusable matter.

    By the way, people get rich in places where *everyone's* a foreigner all the time. Hong Kong was just pretty scenery in 1842. Same with Manhattan in 1613.

    And you have to let people fail. Successful entrepreneurs fail *most* of the time. They just live, some very well, on their few successes. Besides, their wreckage frequently becomes somebody else's "unusable matter", see "property" above.

    If a nation sees wealth as something to be exploited, and opportunity something to be rationed, that nation's people get neither wealth nor opportunity.

  8. i lived in bonaire. it sucks ass. a bunch of poor black/hispanic people who prey on us students. the entire island is corrupt and is designed in a way to only be advantageous to the indigenous/dutch. law enforecement is only concerned about immigration and license place stickers. im sorry but thats how it really is. they call this shithole "divers paradise" but honestly it might as well be a big vacant land for other big countries to dump their trash in. im glad im leaving for good in two months and I HOPE that the school moves to anguilla. and as far as the students driving up prices? your retarded....its because of the 400 students from both the med schools combined that PUMP YOUR pathetic island with sources of income from the apartments, to cars, to grocery, to restaurants. Each student at the MINIMAL spends 1000 AMERICAN dollars a month. That includes rent and food and fun. thats just the least. the average student spends about 1500 dollars a month....so YOU do the math..wait im sorry the dutch and indigenous bonairians are dumb as hell so let me do it for you....thats $600,000 a MONTH. more then 5 million a year in CONSTANT cashflow. all you dutch and bonairians will realize how bad your stupid island will suffer once our school leaves this shit hole Godforsaken crap of land you all call home. and you all wonder why it is a tradition for us students, well the majority of us...to rip up our immigration papers and throw them away in front of the Immigration police as we are graduate from our school. THANK THE LORD the school is leaving.

  9. and this racist moron who could not get into an american medical school is going to be a doctor?I am horrified!

  10. I've noticed activity going on in the building in the Quarter, around the corner from Proctor's supermarket. Is this the start? I'd really like to know what if the Med school is seriously opening up in Anguilla. Please update with any information.
    Curious Med student

  11. The University has alreayd opened...to the person who commented above me. In the same area that you are talking about in teh Quarter. Visit the school's website for more information ont eh school.

  12. Whats the future for Saint James in Bonaire? Do u think its going to move. Man, the island is crap.


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