Cape Coast, Aug 16, GNA – The University of Cape Coast School of Medical Sciences (UCCSMS) on Wednesday held a White Coat Ceremony to mark the transition of 48 level 400 students from the study of preclinical to clinical health sciences.
The White Coat ceremony, a ritual in medical school that involves a formal robbing of students in a doctor's traditional wear, the white coat, was the third to be organized by the UCCSMS, the first and only Medical School in Ghana that holds the ceremony.
Relatives, parents and the others present cheered and applauded as mentors, mainly, lecturers of the School robbed the students in white coat.
They also took the medical students' oath which read in part that they will practice medicine to the highest standards of conduct and seek what is best for their patients without allowing greed or stinginess to corrupt them.
Dr. Eric Asamoah, chairman of Medical and Dental Council of Ghana who was the guest speaker, congratulated the students on completion of the basic science portion of medicine and advised them to take their academic work seriously because doctors impact on people's lives directly.
He agreed with Sir William Osler a renowned medical practitioner that the practice of medicine is an art, not a trade nor a business but a calling that would require exercising their hearts equally with their heads.
Dr Asamoah appealed to the students to show respect and compassion towards the people they come in contact with particularly patients, fellow students, school officials and staff stressing that it was not only academic excellence that makes one a good doctor but also their interpersonal relationships.
The Dean of UCCSMS, Prof Harold Amonoo-Koufie, described the white coat as a cloak of compassion that reminds physicians of their professional duties to lead their lives and practice their art in uprightness and humility urging the students never to forget these professional duties.
He said the UCCSMS recognizes the importance of strong academic foundation for a successful medical career and has therefore structured their programmes to train a unique breed of doctors who will be compassionate whilst respecting the rights of patients.
Prof Amonoo-Koufie said it was UCCSMS' ultimate goal to train doctors whose contribution to health care delivery would transform, for the better, the health status of the nation as a whole.
He said they should therefore raise the standards of medical practice within the community they will serve by not only attaining academic excellence but also discipline, professionalism, integrity and team work.
Professor George Oduro, Director of Institute of Education Planning and Administration, told the students that humility was the key to effective medical practice and a trait that could take them far in life.