Accreditation of the Iraqi Medical Colleges: Urgent call for action
Kirkuk Journal of Medical Sciences,
The National Council for Accreditation of Medical Colleges (NCAMC) has made some progress towards accrediting Iraqi medical schools. However, to date, NCAMC is not internationally recognized by the World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) which fulfils the requirements of the ECFMG’s Recognized Accreditation Policy (due for initial implementation from 2024). The policy requires that a medical school must achieve a recognized accreditation status by a recognized accrediting agency that in itself is recognized and reviewed by an external quality assurance organization. When the policy is fully implemented, only medical schools accredited in line with the Recognized Accreditation Policy will satisfy the requirements of the ECFMG. Medical graduates intending to pursue work, training, registration, research, volunteering or other opportunities are required to apply for verification of their primary medical qualification (PMQ). Certification and verification of PMQ for international medical graduates (IMGs) in the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom and an increasing number of countries globally is done via the ECFMG’s online system known as Electronic Portfolio of International Credentials (EPIC). Therefore, the future of Iraqi medical schools’ education standards is at stake as they do not meet the international standards risking the future of new graduates. The Ministry of Higher Education, universities, medical colleges and the Iraqi Medical Association (IMA) need to collaborate with the NCAMC to get it recognized by the WFME in order to safeguard Iraqi medical education and the future of new doctors from 2024.
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