New head appointed to University of Limerick Graduate Entry Medical School

Alan Owens

Reporter:

Alan Owens

FORMER foundation professor of surgery at the University of Nottingham Graduate Entry Medical School has been appointed to the equivalent position in the University of Limerick.

FORMER foundation professor of surgery at the University of Nottingham Graduate Entry Medical School has been appointed to the equivalent position in the University of Limerick.

Professor Michael Larvin, who previously held positions at the Universities of Leeds and London, Ulm in Germany and in the USA, has taken over from outgoing UL Graduate Entry Medical chief Professor Paul Finucane.

Prof Larvin, has moved to Limerick with his wife Keyna - both of whom have Irish heritage - a teacher and singer, and the youngest of their five children.

For the last four years he has been Director of Education at the Royal College of Surgeons of England, Director of the NHS eLibrary for Surgery, Theatres and Intensive Care and National Clinical Champion for Surgical eLearning for the UK Department of Health.

Prof Larvin has declared that the student learning experience is “firmly at the top” of his agenda and has clinical and research experience in pancreatic disease, metabolism and minimally invasive surgery and his educational interests include technology enhanced learning, e-learning and immersive simulation.

UL president Professor Don Barry welcomed the appointment, him “an excellent fit to our GEMS”.

“He is an enthusiastic advocate of Problem Based Learning which is at the heart of the GEMS programme and he believes, as we all do at UL, that graduate entry medicine will enrich medical education in Ireland by attracting students who are already thoughtful, caring and highly committed learners,” said Prof Barry.

Prof Larvin has said that he hopes to build on the solid foundations already established at the school, strengthening further relationships with GPs, hospital specialists and post-graduate trainees in both teaching and learning.

Over 80 GPs are affiliated with the school, while a network of seven hospitals in the Mid-West now has connections with GEMS.

“I am confident that the interaction of the medical school with local clinicians, health service managers and scientists offers huge potential for improvements in patient care, particularly at a time when austerity is leading a drive for improved benefits at reduced costs,” he said.

“I am privileged to be joining UL GEMS at such an exciting time, with the opening of the new medical school building on a beautiful campus with excellent facilities and a dynamic, fast-growing university that places the student learning experience firmly at the top of its agenda,” he added.

Prof Larvin took over from Newcastle West’s Paul Finucane on August 1. Under Finucane’s leadership the school was awarded Government approval, admitting its first students in September 2007. As of this month over 80 graduates will have qualified as doctors.