Empowering Medical Students: IFMSA Welcomes WFME for Inspiring Discussions on Accreditation and Quality Assurance
During the 72nd IFMSA March Meeting (MM) in Tallinn, Estonia, The International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA) was honored to have invited the World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) President, Professor Ricardo León-Bórquez and WFME Operations Manager, Mrs. Barbora Hrabalová to be in attendance. IFMSA General Assemblies are among the most significant youth-led events around the world, with attendance by over 800 medical students from 100+ countries.
Professor León addressed our students at the Opening Ceremony of the General Assembly, encouraging them to continue working towards better engagement within their medical education systems. As a part of the Standing Committee of Medical Education (SCOME) Sessions, Professor León spoke to students in the session on accreditation and quality assurance and student involvement with the system to provide an overview of strategies for better student engagement in accreditation systems. The session’s goal was for our participants to develop competencies regarding the accreditation processes and capacitate them with the skills required to advocate for and actively participate as stakeholders in accreditation. The IFMSA facilitators opened the session by demonstrating insight into the process and strategies for students to participate and increase representation within the AQA system. Professor León took over the session with an open space dedicated to sharing his experiences within the process and providing innovative solutions for the participants’ challenges.
With students from many nations facing issues relevant to accreditation, a roundtable discussion addressing challenges and opportunities in accreditation between the WFME and IFMSA Member Nations was moderated by the IFMSA Liaison Officer of Medical Education Issues, Kosha Gala. The aim was for students to bring up AQA challenges they face nationally with their accreditation agencies for guidance from Professor León. This side event was attended by national presidents and medical education representatives from various IFMSA member nations who addressed the situations and barriers they are facing within their medical education systems accreditation bodies individually to Professor León, who then provided his insight for better support to the students.
Before the General Assembly, Mrs. Barbora Hrabalová also joined the Pre-MM Advocacy in Medical Education Training (AMET) workshop through a hybrid format. The workshop aimed to highlight student roles as advocates and future global practitioners and discuss common challenges in AQA nationally. AMET participants had the opportunity to partake in an open space discussion with Ms. Hrabalová to understand better the benefits of accreditation and the WFME Standards for Distributed and Distance Learning in Medical Education, to explore the future of accreditation in the current post-pandemic world and to discuss the role of Medical Students in accreditation and quality assurance.
We are very excited to have had the opportunity to host the WFME this General Assembly. With many fruitful intriguing discussions and open spaces for our members to engage with the WFME, we hope to continue hosting such opportunities for students in the future. We appreciate every person that joined us and made this collaboration possible. Let’s keep working toward a better medical education system!