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Educación Médica

versión impresa ISSN 1575-1813

Educ. méd. vol.12 no.1  mar. 2009




Medical education in Latin America

La educación médica en Latinoamérica



Arcadi Gual

Director de la Fundación Educación Médica. E-mail:



In recent years, medical education, as an area of knowledge, has enjoyed increasingly better health all over the world until reaching the current situation, where we can state without a shadow of a doubt that it has finally come of age. It is true that comparisons are odious and if we look at different geographical or, perhaps better still, cultural areas, it becomes clear that it has not achieved the same degree of maturity across the board. Perhaps due to their traditional model of education that focuses very strongly on the pupil, English-speaking societies lead the field by far, but it is also true that medical education is gradually improving and becoming progressively more firmly established in other areas or territories.

Thus, today it is only fair to highlight the sturdiness of medical education in the area of Latin America. It is increasingly more commonly present at national and international conferences and a clear sign of this consolidation is the important number of original papers published in this journal, Educación Médica, that come from the American continent. Moreover, the Ibero-American Group has now become a reference at AMEE conferences, the most important conference in the world on medical education.

Perhaps one of the structures that have helped to consolidate medical education in America has been the Pan-American Federation of Associations of Medical Schools (FEPAFEM/PAFAMS), which, under the guidance of its current Chairman and Executive Director Dr L.N. Ferreira and Dr P.A. Pulido, have joined forces to find the best ways for the member countries to cooperate with one another.

The FEPAFEM ( was set up in 1962 in Viña del Mar (Chile) as an inter American academic and scientific institution, whose purpose is to help to improve medical education in the Americas. It consists of 13 national associations of medical schools from the American continent and 8 individually affiliated faculties, as well as a number of associated members. Today, following the steps of other international bodies related with medical education, FEPAFEM has now added its name to the list of sponsors of this journal, Educación Médica. We are proud of this fact and consider that having it as a contributor to our publication can only improve the reputation of this journal. At the same time it also drives us to step up our commitment to offer the best possible products to those living in Latin America who share an interest in medical education. We hope they are not going to be disappointed, and we also aim to do everything we can to encourage and improve exchange, diffusion and cooperation among all those professionals who have centred their careers and lives on medical education.

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