With the largest investment in medical teaching and applied research by a UK university in the last decade, the University of Leicester believes plans for its new Centre for Medicine will significantly transform the experiences of patients across the region.
Construction has already begun on the new £42 million cutting-edge facility, due to open in autumn 2015. The University’s Centre for Medicine will be home to the departments of Medical and Social Care Education, Health Sciences and Psychology and is to include a range of flexible, interrelated amenities such as teaching and seminar rooms, laboratory research facilities and informal learning support and meeting spaces.
The Centre is working closely with a patient consortium to shape a radical new medical education curriculum for the doctors of tomorrow. It is hoped that students will have more opportunities to learn from doctor-patient interactions via virtual links to real-life consultations.
This unprecedented approach will transform the experience of medical students at Leicester and ensure that they are equipped to deliver a compassionate and caring service for patients. Increased opportunities for students to work with patients, right from the beginning of their studies, is one way the new curriculum will achieve this.
“It can be very easy to treat patients as another part of the hospital and forget the human behind the medical problem,” says Ian Prince, a motorcycle accident survivor involved in the University’s patient consortium. “I hope my experiences as a patient with a brain injury are valuable to trainee doctors when placed alongside their textbooks, and can benefit both patients and future doctors.”
A pioneering ‘rapid response curriculum’ will provide students with immediate access to the latest research breakthroughs and developments in healthcare, with the new Centre becoming the hub for an unparalleled research and health service consortium. It will link the University’s leading Medical School with three National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Units (BRUs) and the University’s research centres based at all three of the city’s hospitals.
“Leicester is in a unique position in the UK to tackle illnesses threatening not just local, but global health. Through our pioneering applied research in Leicester, we can lead the fight against chronic diseases,” explains Professor Kamlesh Khunti, Professor of Primary Care Diabetes and Vascular Medicine, University of Leicester. “This new facility will provide world-class facilities to enable us to continue our life-changing research.”
The University has committed £32 million to the project and is launching a £10 million fundraising appeal to close the funding gap to complete and equip the new Centre. This includes the launch event, The Heartbeat Ball, which will be taking place on Thursday 22 May, 2014 at the Athena.
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