WFME process initiated in Pakistan
Pakistan Medical Commission has formally initiated the application process for recognition by World Federation for Medical Education (WFME).
The entire process of assessment including physical visit by the WFME and inspection is expected to take 12 to 15 months, which is well within the time frame of 2024 when WFME recognition will be mandatory to enable Pakistani doctors and students to study or work abroad and specifically in compliance to the requirements of the authorities in the United States.
The WFME recognition is essential for Pakistan to ensure that doctors from Pakistan are able to go and train and work internationally.
The PMC will be closely liaising with WFME and other international organizations to ensure that all requirements for recognition are fully met prior to the actual assessment and inspection process of WFME.
In addition, PMC as part of the process planned for extensive workshops and seminars for all medical colleges in Pakistan over the next four months to assist in capacity building and enable and prepare all medical colleges for the WFME visit and inspections.
The WFME recognition process initiated runs its full course divided over phases with extensive data and information submissions made and evaluated as per the steps of the WFME process culminating in the final physical visit and assessment of the PMC and selected medical colleges.
It has taken the Commission extensive efforts and continued work for almost 18 months to prepare for the WFME process, which is now complete. The formal application to WFME to initiate the process required the prior approval of the new 2022 National Standards for Recognition of Medical and Dental Colleges and Teaching Hospitals as well as the 2022 National Medical and Dental Curricula, which have recently been approved and notified after the invaluable and immense effort including hundreds of hours of work put in by the National Medical & Dental Academic Board over the last 15 months to formulate and structure these standards and the curriculum.
The standards and curriculum provide the foundation for modern medical and dental education systems and the Board will be continuing their work to consistently improve the standards and curriculum raising the quality bar for both colleges and students.
The Commission has over the last year worked tirelessly to ensure that all regulatory processes including the recognition and accreditation of teaching hospitals and colleges as well as the admission and examination process and specially the national licensing examination are designed and implemented at the highest international standards including the introduction of digital licensing for practitioners.
These are key aspects required for the WFME recognition process. The Commission had unfortunately inherited a system which was based on outdated and manual processes without the proper transparency or objectivity required in a modern regulatory structure.
The Commission’s digital transformation has been one of the key ingredients which has enabled the large scale reforms to the medical and dental sector regulation.
The Pakistan Medical Commission is also a Full Member of the International Association of Medical Regulatory Authorities (IAMRA).
PMC is today internationally recognized as the exclusive regulatory body in Pakistan following the highest standards for medical and dental education and licensure of medical and dental practitioners.
As part of its efforts to collaborate with international regulatory authorities and ensure its standards are recognized in key countries where Pakistani doctors seek to undertake postgraduate training and gain work experience, the Commission is working on finalizing a technical relationship with some of the leading international medical regulatory authorities specifically with a view to acquiring a transfer of knowledge and technical expertise in enhancing the standard of the Pakistan National Licensing Exam.
The objective remains to have the NLE recognized internationally to provide further recognition to Pakistani medical and dental graduates.