Vestlandslegen is born

Last Tuesday the opening of Vestlandslegen was officially marked at Stavanger University Hospital (SUS). Vestlandslegen is now the name of The Medeical School at UiB, where some of the students receive their main clinical training in Stavanger.

Vestlandslegen’s father Professor Steinar Hunskår gave us an interesting introduction to the motivation for and the history behind Vestlandslegen. The idea is that the entire country must be used in medical education in order to increase the capacity and create connection to the region where the education takes place. The work Hunskår and his colleagues have done will not only have significance for the Western Norway, the Vestlandslegen is also a template for similar decentralized education at the other universities in Norway, emphasized by Martin Fredheim who congratulated on behalf of the Ministry of Education.

The first group consists of 7 students, but the number will quickly be increased to 20. Further expansion of the program in Stavanger and later in Haugesund and Førde will depend on funding from the Ministry of Education. It is therefore important that the Vestlandslegen is successful and there is every reason to believe that it will be. Dean Per Bakke and Hospital director Helle Schøyen at SUS emphasized the good cooperation during the pregnancy of Vestlandslegen.

Hunskår also took the opportunity to say thank you and passed the baton to Professor Simon Dankel as project manager for the Vestlandslegen. We are convinced this will ensure the newborn Vestlandslegen good nutrition so that it can grow well.

Vestlandslegen is also important in a larger perspective. The program will help spread and increase medical expertise at SUS and the rest of Western Norway, which was emphasized by Helse Vest’s director Bjørn-Egil Vikse. Vestlandslegen will contribute to bringing the region of Western Norway together even more. Can we imagine that the Universities of Stavanger and Bergen could merge, possibly also with the University College of Western Norway? Western Norway must become stronger so that we can win in competition with UiO and NTNU and not compete with each other for limited funds.

With this, we wish Vestlandslegen success, the best medical education in Norway.

Eystein Husebye
Deputy director K2

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