Medicine is being dragged kicking and squealing into the age of accountability, but what role will medicine play in society in 10 or 20 years time? How can the medical education of today be fashioned to train doctors for a desirable future?
In May 1999 I visited an eminent scientist at the Harvard School of Medicine to discuss how commercial development can be used to best effect in tandem with nationally competitive grants to support basic research. Interesting stuff but, as conversations do, ours wandered. I told him about my long-standing interest in medical education and how we at the University of Sydney, like Harvard, had recently taken a new pathway (for us) in medical education, namely using adult learning methods, small groups and problem-based learning. I had pressed a detonator.