Valedictory lecture Prof. dr. Richard P. Koopmans
Professor of "General Internal Medicine, in particular in education and its training" at the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences
"De stoel van Johan"
This will be my farewell lecture. I am 65 years old, male, and started my career as a medical doctor in 1983 and today, in 2023, I say goodbye. For more than 25 years I have had various managerial roles in medical education.
The students concerned are now usually women in age categories 18-35. Medical practice has been subject to great changes during past decades, and the same applies to patients and their doctors. What should this imply for the expectations a doctor may have for her career, and what should it mean for postgraduate medical education? In what respect is being and becoming a doctor something that differs from, say, being a teacher, architect or cashier? There are much thoughts around these topics and these thoughts led to a multitude of initiatives to modernize postgraduate medical education to make it suitable for the doctors of today. An evaluation of all of this is needed: are we moving in the right direction, are we doing the right things, and how successful is it that we are doing? It appears that despite some successes several problems remain difficult to solve. It can be questioned if we really understand the problems we are dealing with, and if so, this incomplete understanding hampers all actions taken. How important is it that we give medical practicioners in continuing education (mostly women ages 25-35) the opportunities to largely design their new work environment themselves? I will discuss these questions and give my opinion on all of these, point to opportunities, outline where choices will be painful, and why we should expect resistance.
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