Education, Practice, and Organization of Healthcare in the 21st Century

A New Paradigm Is Needed for Medical Education in the Mid-Twenty-First Century and Beyond: Are We Ready?

Dan E. Benor


The twentieth century witnessed profound changes in medical education. All these changes, however, took place within the existing framework, suggested by Flexner a century ago. The present paper suggests that we are approaching a singularity point, where we shall have to change the paradigm and be prepared for an entirely new genre of medical education. This suggestion is based upon analysis of existing and envisaged trends: first, in technology, such as availability of information and sophisticated simulations; second, in medical practice, such as far-reaching interventions in life and death that create an array of new moral dilemmas, as well as a change in patient mix in hospitals and a growing need of team work; third, in the societal attitude toward higher education. The structure of the future medical school is delineated in a rough sketch, and so are the roles of the future medical teacher. It is concluded that we are presently not prepared for the approaching changes, neither from practical nor from attitudinal points of view, and that it is now high time for both awareness of and preparation for these changes.

Rambam Maimonides Med J 2014;5(3):e0018