University students concerned at hospital’s ‘already stretched resources’

Miguela Xuereb

The Kunsill Studenti Universitarji (KSU) and the Malta Medical Students Association (MMSA) have expressed concern that when Barts Medical School reaches full capacity, another 180 students will be added to Mater Dei’s ‘already stretched resources’. KSU and MMSA said that these resources include both academic and clinical staff, clinical time, infrastructure and patients.

The student organisations said that “while the Ministry for Health (MfH) insists that the current resources are sufficient, daily first-hand experience before the pandemic showed that resources were already limited, with issues related to clinical attachments and consultant-to-student ratios.

Freedom of Information request denied

As the number of Barts students increases, this situation is bound to exacerbate”. KSU and MMSA said that the Freedom of Information Act request filed in2019 was denied. “It is disappointing that the MfH is unwilling to fully disclose the conditions for Barts Medical School at Mater Dei Hospital with the elected representatives of all medical students at the University of Malta. The response received from the Ministry during the mediation process makes it clear that the MfH is reluctant to ensure that quality of medical education for the University of Malta student is not compromised,” said the KSU and the MMSA.

MMSA and KSU said that they remain adamant “…that there is no room for compromise with the interests of our members”. The KSU and the MMSA called upon the relevant authorities to take heed of their requests and recognise the urgency for action.