New Foundation School of Medicine for Samoa to start in 2020

The NUS Vice Chancellor with the lecturers and representatives of Otago University – the founders of the first Foundation Medicine program at the National University of Samoa.

By Rula Su’a – Vaai

APIA, SAMOA – THURSDAY 24 JANUARY 2019:  A new Foundation School of Medicine for Samoa will start classes in 2020.

This was announced yesterday by the Vice Chancellor of the National University of Samoa, Leapai Professor Tu’ua Ilaoa Lau Asofou So’o in a joint press conference with representatives from Otago University, the Scientific Research Organisation of Samoa, the School of Medicine, NUS and the School of Nursing.

It is the first time the Foundation programme for Medicine is introduced.

According to the Vice Chancellor, Year 13 students who want to be doctors will take the Medicine Foundation programme or the Faculty of Health Science. Other students who will not make the Foundation programme will continue on to the current Foundation programme at the National University of Samoa.

Leapai added that more subjects will be added as the programme progresses.

“For the first time since the School of Medicine started at NUS, we now have a full time, full teaching staff and lecturers on board,” Leapai explained.

“We are now able to get full assistance from other institutions outside of Samoa like Otago Medical School, highly qualified researchers from Yale and Brown Universities in the Unites States.”

Leapai also said that some of the courses in the medical program will be taught live via the interet from Otago University in New Zealand.

Some of the lecturers will include Aiono Dr. Alec Ekeroma, a specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology,  Asiata Dr. Satupaitea Viali who will be teaching Cardiovascular diseases and Internal Medicine, Dr. Osborne Nyandiva specialist in Pathology and Oncology, Lawal Olantunde Olayemi for Microbiology and Epidemiology, Dr. Dyxon Hansell and Tuigamala Dr. Stanley Dean.

SROS –Scientific Research Office Samoa, have committed their assistance through some of their highly qualified researcher employees as part time lectures.

This year, thirteen students have been accepted in the School of Medicine programme including three students from Australia and the Solomon Islands.