“On October 21st 2017 twelve doctors from Oxford left Luton Airport for our ninth teaching trip to the Palestinian Territories, and our fifth teaching trip to Gaza. Our party comprised 4 surgeons, 3 paediatricians, 3 physicians, 1 radiologist and for the first time, an obstetrician! After an overnight stop in Ashdod, we crossed Erez easily and were met by Fadel Naim (Dean of IUG) and Ibrahim Abu Hassanain, our lead Teaching Assistant for the week.
We went to the University to meet the President of the University. We had arranged to spend some time with the Teaching Assistants for the week, and later that afternoon all the IUG Teaching Assistants and three of the Al Azhar Teaching Assistants joined us at the hotel for a terrific session of “Training the Trainers”. This was run by Bex Ingliss, one of the Oxford Teachers, and was a great addition to our Teaching Week. The appointment of Teaching Assistants by the Universities over the last few years has improved the clinical student teaching significantly, and we are very hopeful that the Training the Trainers half day with us will enable them to improve their teaching skills yet further. It has been very noticeable to us that the bedside skills of students have improved hugely over the last 2-3 years.
On the Wednesday evening we had a great time hearing the best audit presentations by the students, and we were enormously impressed by the quality of the audits. A prize was awarded to the winner, but we all agreed the standard was exceptional. We also contributed to an excellent Surgical Conference where the Oxford Surgeons spoke on a variety of subjects. It was an opportunity to share surgical experiences and meet old friends, and was a very enjoyable evening.
As always we received the most wonderful hospitality during our week, usually centred on magnificent food, and although there were, as always, many demands on our time, we never lost sight of the main purpose of our trip – to teach the clinical medical students. It is wonderful to see students we have taught in previous years now working as junior doctors, and still as enthusiastic as they were when they were students, and planning their future careers. There are well advanced for our next trip in November 2018. Although the trips are partly self-funded we are extremely grateful to FQMS for the financial support we receive for this trip.”