Trinity School of Medicine News Blog

Trinity School of Medicine Proudly Congratulates St. Vincent and the Grenadines on Receiving US Dept. of Education NCFMEA Approval

As the only CAAM-HP (Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Education in Medicine and other health Professions) accredited school in St. Vincent, Trinity School of Medicine is particularly excited to announce that CAAM-HP's standards in St. Vincent and the Grenadines have received formal approval from the US Department of Education's National Committee on Foreign Medical Education and Accreditation (NCFMEA) on October 24th, 2016, joining only 23 other recognized countries

US Dept of Education Seal

First, some background. The NCFMEA is, by its own mandate, “authorized to evaluate the standards of accreditation applied to foreign medical schools, and to determine the comparability of those standards to standards applied to medical schools in the United States."

St. Vincent adopted CAAM-HP as the formal accrediting body for the country, and Trinity earned its CAAM-HP accreditation, in 2015. Prior to this specific national recognition of CAAM-HP accreditation on St. Vincent, CAAM-HP standards and processes were already aproved by the World Federation of Medical Education (WFME) as having standards equivalent to the US LCME standards. So, in many ways, there has already been recognition of what St. Vincent is providing. That said, this independent, US Dept. of Education NCFMEA approval of St. Vincent's specific adoption and application of CAAM-HP standards on its medical schools (at this point, only Trinity School of Medicine), means we have achieved a new level of possibilities for what we as a school can offer our students. Between that and this new level of de facto recognition, it brings us to the top tier of Caribbean medical schools.

Since we seated our first class in 2008, Trinity has placed residents and practicing physicians in 5 Canadian provinces and nearly half the states in the US, with more added each year. We're dedicated to pursuing that growth, as well. 1/4th of medical professionals in the United States are international medical graduates, and we're proud to contribute to that as a school associated with both confidence and quality. To that end, this NCFMEA recognition contributes to our mission of going above and beyond ensuring Trinity is accredited and compliant when the ECFMG’s 2023 accreditation rule goes into effect

National and International Recognition and Accreditation
Accreditation Interplay and Trinity

  • World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) has recognized the Liaison Committee for Medical Education (LCME)  This confers the understanding that the LCME has been assessed and found to be credible in its policies and procedures to ensure the quality of medical education in the programs and medical schools that it accredits.
  • WFME has recognized the Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Education in Medicine and other Health Professions (CAAM-HP)This confers the understanding that the CAAM-HP has been assessed and found to be credible in its policies and procedures to ensure the quality of medical education in the programs and medical schools that it accredits.
  • US Department of Education recognized the LCME For accreditation of programs of medical education leading to the MD degree in the US in institutions that are themselves accredited by regional accrediting organizations.
  • National Committee for Foreign Medical Education and Accreditation (NCFMEA) recognized CAAM-HP in St. Vincent and the Grenadines NCFMEA is a committee within the U.S. Department of Education with the authority to  determine comparability of the standards of accreditation applied to foreign medical schools and to determine the comparability of those standards to those applied to medical schools in the US.
  • CAAM-HP accredited Trinity School of Medicine CAAM-HP, using standards comparable to those of the accrediting authority of medical schools in the US, accredited Trinity School of Medicine in 2015.

ECFMG's Certification Requirement for 2023

Trinity already met the ECFMG guidelines prior to this latest approval, but as a school dedicated to training physicians to operate in the US, having the US Department of Education recognize the body that gave us our accreditation is, without a doubt, an additional layer of confidence of the sort we strive to offer our students.

On the ECFMG, Trinity's president Steven R. Wilson commented, “Some states might require that students graduating in 2023 complete their entire 4 years of medical school under the accrediting mandates to be considered for a residency or licensure. If this is the case, then students will want to attend only accredited schools under the approved country list by 2019. By securing this approval just over two years ahead of that 2019 threshold, we can be sure our students will not face this challenge.” 

President Wilson continued on the recent development, “We are, at our core, about providing the best possible opportunity for our students. This next step forward [NCFMEA for St. Vincent] is exciting for three major reasons: first, it’s a clear message to the world that we’re providing a high quality education, something we focus on day in and day out. Second, it’s recognition of everything the people and government of St. Vincent have worked towards over the past few years. Finally, while we already have partners providing incredibly competitive loan opportunities for our students, this is major progress towards Title IV recognition and exploring the options of federal loan. As a school that’s about providing excellent, viable paths to medicine for aspiring doctors, Title IV recognition provides other benefits beyond federal disbursement, such as undergraduate and graduate loan deferment. We’re very excited for our students and the nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.” 

Dean Linda Adkison added, “Academically, we’re governed by a principle of constant improvement. We believe in St. Vincent’s past achievements and future potential and its dedication to its own growth. It is a testament to that constant drive for progress to provide the best education both we and St. Vincent can for the greater local and global medical communities. We’re proud of St. Vincent, and we’re very excited for what it will mean for the future of Trinity and our students.” 

While the bulk of our enthusiasm is for St. Vincent itself, we are also very excited to announce that we will apply for Title IV eligibility this month, thanks to this most recent approval of our host nation's accreditation standards. 

For those that might not be aware, Title IV has numerous levels of approval and recognition, from conditional to full, with privilages and benefits at each.The direct benefits for students will vary based on our progress with the levels of Title IV recognition. Initially it is likely to initially provide benefits like:

  • Enabling students to place existing federal and other student loans on an in-school deferment.
  • Trinity’s ability to issue 1098-T tuition tax forms resulting in student  tax benefits such as the lifetime learning credit.
  • Ability to to pursue additional loan programs

We hope you are as excited as we are for this new development and encourage you, as always, to contact us directly, should you have any questions. 

Topics: Caribbean medical school student success trinity school of medicine Caribbean medical schools Accredited caribbean medical school ECFMG ncfmea title iv caam-hp

Carlson's Caribbean Adventure: A Trinity Student Blog

Want a direct student perspective? Read Moriah Carlson's blog about life on St. Vincent and her husband's time at Trinity!