St. George’s University Grad Honored for Spinal Cord Research

J. Matthew Sasser, SGU 2005, received the 2005 Excellence in Emergency Medicine Award, a prestigious honor awarded by the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine. SGU is the only non US or Canadian medical school whose graduates have received this award. Dr. Sasser remarks, “My love for EM (Emergency Medicine) has been fueled over the past few years while serving on the executive board of our school’s Emergency Medicine Club,” and his involvement did not go unnoticed.

Soon after students had completed their CPR certification classes in Grenada, Dr. Sasser staged an act on campus to show incoming first-year students that “knowing how to help others means more than just carrying certification cards in their wallets.” Dr. Sasser “collapsed” outside of the SGU lecture halls on the True Blue campus during a break from classes, hoping to see students apply the practices just learned to “save” him. After four minutes, one individual from the gathering students approached and began an assessment. Shortly thereafter, a planned ambulance arrived for J. Matthew Sasser. The demonstration was helped to promote a lecture on “Improvisational Emergency Medicine.” (Dr. Sasser apologized later to University officials since he did not notify them and there was some immediate consternation about his “collapse” on campus).

This kind of innovative thinking and dedication to the real learning process has led to Dr. Sasser’s success. He will start his residency in June at the Penn State University College of Medicine Emergency Medicine Program at the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania. He concludes, “Conversing with my colleagues plants the seeds of superior treatment for exponentially more patients than solely our own. If given the opportunity, I will bring my commitment to learning and my dedication to teaching in your program.”

The Excellence in Emergency Medicine Award brings with it a one year membership in the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, a subscription to the Journal of Academic Emergency Medicine and a certificate from the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine (SAEM). In order to be applicable for such an award, the student must be commencing an emergency medicine residency and must submit a personal statement for review.

There were several excellent nominees for this award from the SGU School of Medicine, but Dr. Sasser best exemplified the qualities of an excellent emergency medicine physician – superior clinical, interpersonal, and manual skills, and a dedication to continued professional development leading to outstanding performance on his emergency medicine rotations.

Prior award recipients from SGU include: 2004 – Kevin A. O’Toole; 2003 – Lisa Keough; 2002 – Herald Ostovar; 2001 – Marc Milano.

Published on 05/25/2005

Princeton Review: Rewriting the Rules

He’s written the textbooks; he’s lectured across the world and is a recognized leader in the complex field of rheumatology. But Dr. John J. Cush, repeatedly named nationally as one of the “best doctors” in his specialty, says his 25-year career thrived because he rewrote the rules every step of the way, beginning with his choice of medical school.

Dr. Cush was initially attracted to medicine at age 15 when several close family members fell ill. His first hand observations led him to determine that he could contribute to the field of medicine by combining his natural bend to science with his own well-honed communication skills. That’s when he broke the first “rule” and decided to attend medical school at St. George’s University in Grenada, West Indies, as a member of the second class.

Dr. Cush attributes much of his subsequent career focus to the St. George’s University philosophy now embodied in its anthem: “Think Beyond.” “St. George’s was all about potential and possibility and not about subscribing to a predetermined expectation.”

Racheting It Up

During his years at the University, Dr. Cush originally zeroed in on primary care as his future. He believed his strongest contributions to medicine could come in the area of patient communication. “I saw what I didn’t like – people who were the medical professionals were always intelligent, but not always able to communicate. And I decided it’s not always about writing an order for a bedpan – it’s about talking to the wife, maybe the cousin, maybe the next door neighbor as well to make sure that people are OK with the plan proposed for them,” Dr. Cush explains. “And that’s what I thought my niche would be – communicating to patients, developing my skills, helping the greatest number of people I could.”

But, somewhere during his second year of residency, Dr. Cush’s attention was caught by the intricate specialty of rheumatology, his curiosity triggered by a mysterious patient case.

“I was working with a 23-year-old woman from New York who was admitted with complex medical problems that none of my medical colleagues could seem to decipher. She had fevers; we thought maybe it was a serious infection. But ultimately, it was the rheumatologists who knew what to do and she was diagnosed with a form of juvenile arthritis ­ Still’s Disease.”

Dr. Cush explains that during the residency training years, young physicians come into contact with many specialists and “they impact you. But these guys [the rheumatologists] were like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid – and I thought, ‘Who WERE those guys and why do they know something the rest of us don’t?’”

He was aware of the common perception that rheumatology meant treating “little old ladies.” Yet, Dr. Cush’s St. George’s education had taught him “to reject ‘truths’ and make my own truths.” So he dove in head first, training in the field, mounting research, and attaining leadership positions in The National Arthritis Foundation and the American College of Rheumatology.

Rewriting the Field

Now, as Chief of the Division of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology and Medical Director of the Arthritis Center of Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas, he continually researches new therapies, treats new patients, noting wryly that of the ten patients he saw on one recent day, “three were in their twenties, one was a nine-year-old, one was 50, and two were in their 60s.” Definitely not a disease confined to little old ladies.

To battle arthritis in all its forms, Dr. Cush has spent his career at the forefront of research into enabling patients to lead happy lives in the face of chronic illness. He has investigated new biologic medicines that carry fewer negative effects in treatment than the earlier steroid therapies. And, he remains devoted to communication, though far beyond the levels he first imagined.

Beyond his one-on-one involvement in helping his patients cope with long-term chronic illness, and his teaching duties as Clinical Professor of Internal Medicine at the Texas Southwestern Medical School, Dr. Cush has published over 100 works in the field, including co-authoring the leading textbook. He serves on the editorial board of Bone and Joint and as well as on the Arthritis Advisory Committee for the Food and Drug Administration.

Despite his great involvement in rheumatology, and his non-stop responsibilities to patients, students, and the broader medical community, Dr. Cush has not forgotten the institution that encouraged him – he is a member of St. George’s University’s Board of Trustees and Chairman of the Academic Board.

John Cush, MD, says “St. George’s encouraged me by putting pressure on me to meet a new expectation for myself. I learned to carve my own path to success.” Not breaking the rules – rewriting them for a leading role in clinical and academic medicine.

Published on 05/19/2005

First Cornea Transplants Performed in Grenada

Grenadians will receive corneal transplants through an initiative made possible by the Minister of Health, Mrs. Ann David-Antoine, and two graduates of SGUSOM, Robert Fucigna, MD, and Orazio Giliberti, MD. These cornea transplants are the latest developments in a well established history of service to the Grenadian people by the SGU’s School of Medicine. Cornea transplants are costly, sophisticated eye operations that average more than $50,000 (USD) per operation.

Dr. Giliberti is the first graduate of St. George’s School of Medicine to specialize in Ophthalmology. After completing his studies, Dr. Giliberti continued to maintain strong ties with the University, first as a Visiting Professor in the Clinical Skills Department, and since 1997, an Associate Dean of Clinical Studies. Screenings for cornea transplants began as early as 1983, beginning with members of the SGU community including staff and students. This program was formally instituted in 1995; however, until this new initiative, patients were required to travel to the United States where the operations were performed.

Today, Dr. Giliberti is the Associate Dean of Clinical Studies, US, and the Director of Ophthalmology at St. George’s University, a department which boasts of no less than thirty skilled ophthalmologists. He, as well, serves as the Director of Opthalmology at Seton Hall University. Two years ago, Dr. Giliberti embarked on a project to bring quality medical eye care to the people of Grenada. He teamed up with Grenadian eye specialist, Dr. Elliot McGuire, and together they conducted a total of fifty screenings, identifying candidates who would need this very specialized care. From these screenings, three candidates were chosen for the cornea transplants, have undergone this surgery, and are now at the Eye Ward. There remain about twenty persons in Grenada still in need of corneal surgery.

The deterioration of a person’s cornea can lead to the total loss of sight and can occur either as a genetic defect or as a result of infection. In the latter, the infection first needs to be treated. Then the damaged cornea tissue is replaced by a new graft. “It’s like a car that has a damaged windshield; the windshield is taken out and replaced with a new one, thus restoring better sight to the eye,” Dr. Fucigna explained.

As the project becomes established, Dr. Giliberti anticipates that local doctors will be trained to perform the procedure and that medicines and equipment will be provided so that such operations can become a standard part of health care in Grenada. Mr. Stephen Thomas, Director of the Hospital stated, “We should continue to harness the resources of SGU, making use of the services of the doctors, seminars, conferences and work together with them to provide better health care for the people of Grenada.”

Published on 04/21/2005

Record Enrollment for St. George’s University

Enrollment at St. George’s University is at an all time high. The campus is bustling with students from all over the world studying medicine, veterinary medicine, business, information technology, and in many other undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

The entering student population has increased by 6% from last year alone (the 2003-04 academic year). In fact, the total enrollment of the University – slightly over 3,000 students, has increased almost 50% since 1999! The enrollment of new students increased by 55% since the 2001-02 academic year. We have enrolled almost 1,060 students this academic year.

This year, more students have entered the MD program through the premedical program (recently moved into the School of Medicine) than in any year since its inception; there were 22 new students in the program in August, and 40 entered this February – for a total of 62 new students in this academic year. The premedical program allows students from around the world in various educational systems to enter the Doctor of Medicine program.

The Masters of Public Health Program enrolled over 100 students this academic year, maintaining its image as one of the healthiest programs on campus. Over 100 new undergraduate students have entered this year, reaching a four-year high. If we add those students who have entered the baccalaureate degree program through our affiliate, T. A. Marryshow Community College (TAMCC), we have enrolled more than 200 new students this academic year.

The secondary school component of Camp Medicine, 2005 is already oversubscribed, with many more students and student-teacher groups waiting to sign on board.

“The best kept secret in the Caribbean is no longer a secret,” said Margaret Lambert, Dean of Enrolment Planning. “It is gratifying to see so many students from so many places all studying and living together on this beautiful island, which is recovering so well and so quickly from the violence of Hurricane Ivan.”

Published on 03/07/2005

UK Registration Eased for St. George’s University Medical Graduates

The General Medical Council in the United Kingdom recently agreed to allow overseas doctors, including students from St. George’s University School of Medicine, sit Part I of the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board after they complete their medical program requirements rather than after graduation.

This decision potentially reduces the time frame of becoming registered and able to take a house job (internship year) by a considerable number of months and is of significance for St. George’s students wishing to practice medicine in the United Kingdom after graduation as they will not have to wait as long to be eligible to seek postgraduate training.

As of August 2005, the six-month long Pre-Registration House Officer posts in the UK will come to an end. Foundation Year Posts, Years 1 and 2 will come into effect. Throughout the UK there are a number of Foundation Year Posts which are not matched to UK Medical Schools and which will be available to St. George’s qualified students. Application for these Posts has to be made one year prior. The Office of Career Guidance has a new member specifically to deal with UK practice issues as the path to medicine in the UK becomes more attractive for St. George’s graduates.

The University mounted an intensive campaign which included meetings with senior politicians from the major political parties in the UK, letters from the Dean of Clinical Studies to national newspapers, and support work with members of the press about the quality of education at St. George’s University in relation to the doctor shortage in the United Kingdom. Formerly, it took up to 18 months for a St. George’s graduate to qualify for postgraduate training. This easing of the time restrictions is wonderful news for those St. George’s students whose ambition is to practice medicine in the United Kingdom.

Published on 03/07/2005

Drs. Arnold and Sandra Gold Guest Speakers at St. George’s University School of Medicine

Dr. Arnold P. Gold and Dr. Sandra Gold are the guest speakers at the White Coat Ceremony for the School of Medicine’s Spring 2005 entering class. The School of Medicine is honored to have two of the founders of the White Coat Ceremony to speak to the medical students as they are initiated into the medical profession.

In the late 1980’s the Golds and a group of colleagues, medical educators and community leaders gathered to discuss their mutual concern that medical practitioners were losing their focus on humanism in medicine as scientific and technological advances began to change the way medicine was practiced. As a result of these consultations the Arnold P. Gold Foundation was founded in 1988 as a means to facilitate the development and implementation of appropriate methods and programs to further humanism in medicine.

The conclusion of the Foundation was that the beginning of a student’s journey into medicine, the start of clinical experience with patients, was the best time to influence standards of professionalism, humanistic values and behavior. As the first step in this initiative the White Coat Ceremony was introduced in 1993. New medical students don a white coat, a symbol of their profession, and recite an oath making a commitment to henceforth maintain a professional attitude and demeanor in their relationships with peers, professors and colleagues, and demonstrate compassion, respect, empathy and altruism with patients and the community, including sensitivity to cultural and ethnic backgrounds.

St. George’s University School of Medicine embraced the White Coat Ceremony in 1996, soon after its beginning, as an important ritual symbolizing a student’s induction into the medical profession. The ceremony, witnessed by family, friends and the academic community, is conducted at the beginning of Orientation week, just before first term classes begin. The Professional Commitment, written by the Student Ethics Task Force, is recited at this time.

We at St. George’s University are honored to have such accomplished and dedicated professionals usher in our novice physicians, encouraging them to strive for excellence in their future careers.

ARNOLD P. GOLD, M.D. has been associated with the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University for the past 40 years and is currently Professor of Clinical Neurology and Professor of Clinical Pediatrics. He is also the Secretary of the American Medical Association (AMA) Foundation, serves on several professional advisory boards and is Chairman of the Medical Advisory Board of the Myoclonus Research Foundation.

In November 1997, The Arnold P. Gold Foundation was awarded the prestigious Dean’s Award for Distinguished Service in Medicine from the Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons. In 1999, Dr. Gold received the Physicians and Surgeons Distinguished Service Award at Commencement at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and was awarded Honorary Doctorates of Humane Letters by the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in 2001 and Sacred Heart University in Connecticut in 2003.

Dr. Gold is the author of more than 80 published articles and several books in the field of Pediatric Neurology and the recipient of many special awards, lectureships, and professorships, including the National Brennerman Award in Pediatrics. He was the 1992 recipient of the Practitioner of the Year award at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center. Listed in Who’s Who in Medicine, Healthcare, and Science and Engineering as well as Who’s Who in the World, Dr. Gold has been recognized as one of the “Best Doctors in America ” by American Health Magazine.

SANDRA O. GOLD, Ed.D. is the Executive Vice President and co-founder of The Arnold P. Gold Foundation. Dedicated to making the world a better place, her concern for the elderly and those with disabilities has resulted in the creation of many innovative programs to address the special needs of these populations. She is founding President of both the UJA Federation Community Advocacy Program, promoting lifetime advocacy and care to individuals with disabilities, and the UJA Federation Association for the Developmentally Disabled, which establishes respite services and group homes.

She has served as President of the Florence Heller Research Center of the Jewish Community Centers Association of North America, as Assistant Treasurer of the Jewish Educational Service of North America and chair of one of its task force on recruitment, development and retention of Jewish educators; and serves on several other national and local philanthropic boards.

Dr. Gold is also founder of the JCC Thurnauer School of Music, a comprehensive community music school that currently serves more than eight hundred students. She is a board member of the Myoclonus Research Foundation and is listed in Who’s Who in the East, The World and American Women. Her active leadership in community assistance programs has been recognized by many philanthropic organizations. Additionally, she was awarded Honorary Doctorates of Humane Letters from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in 2001 and from Sacred Heart University in Connecticut in 2003.
Published on 01/31/2005

Heal, Protect, In War or Peace

The face of medicine is changing as the practice and the teaching of medicine broadens to incorporate the best practices globally in the best possible way regionally. The resulting innovative curricula lead doctors to career possibilities outside traditional pathways. A great example of this new kind of physician is Kurt A. Henry, MD, who holds the rank of Commander in the U.S. Navy, and recognized as a national leader in developing new approaches for combat casualty care, disaster management and operational medicine.

Dr. Henry credits his education at St. George’s University School of Medicine in Grenada, West Indies (SGU ‘88) with adding a global perspective to his already existing fascination with the functions of the body and the principles of science. Now he integrates his background as a Canadian-born but U.S. trained officer with his broad based St. George’s education and medical practice experience in a variety of settings across the U.S.

“St. George’s makes you aware of global needs and challenges, for example, parasitic diseases. The average U.S. medical student is bombarded with and defers to technology. They don’t have the same first-hand experience or basic medical training that a St. George’s graduate has,” says Dr. Henry.

This particular emphasis informs Dr. Henry as he helped to develop national standards on biosurveillance technology for the Department of Defense and the U.S. public health system, as well as self-care medical technologies for individual servicemen on the battlefield.

Protecting the Public…and the Military

His commitment to protecting the population at large from threatening health disasters like bio-terrorism was strengthened when he was a trauma care leader at the Pentagon following the September 11th terrorist attack. Ironically, Dr. Henry had been in the middle of a briefing session on preparedness for a terrorist attack with the Director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency when the planes struck their targets in Washington and New York.

“It was on that day that I decided to remain in the military and pursue the challenges of technology transition and force transformation…out of patriotism to my country,” states Dr. Henry.

In the years since, Dr. Henry has applied his evolving expertise to projects as disparate as managing joint medical efforts between the defense and military sectors and the Centers for Disease Control on disaster exercises, and leading a team of scientists in creating self-care medicine technologies on the battlefield. He has also led new efforts to develop programs in blast countermeasures, sensory perception, and tissue regeneration. In addition, one of the health programs he managed was successfully used by CENCOM during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Now, while he actively charts the path for Government to business migration of new medical programs, he also works as a medical visionary, creating solutions for battlefield care that won’t be seen for another 10-15 years.

Currently, Dr. Henry has been assigned as the Commander Expeditionary Strike Group-Surgeon, Amphibious Squadron Eight/ USS Kearsarge Strike Group and Officer in Charge, Fleet Surgical Team Four.

Where It Began

Founded in 1976 on the Caribbean island of Grenada to provide a quality education to aspiring doctors, and now home to a vibrant community of people from over 85 countries, St. George’s University is an international melting pot of students, scientists, healers and educators. The University created the first truly global curriculum, drawing on the best of U.S. and U.K. medical systems, and later strengthened its commitment to education by adding a School of Veterinary Medicine, a School of Arts and Sciences, and many graduate programs.

St. George’s tradition of commitment to academic leadership has drawn Nobel Prize winners to its academic board, and professors and visiting scholars from the most prestigious institutions in the world, including Harvard University, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Health, and the Rockefeller Institute. The University takes pride in its strong and stable faculty of 800 plus members, with full-time professors with an average tenure of ten years. It also has a network of prestigious clinical training affiliations with well-established U.S. and U.K. institutions for the School of Medicine and the U.S., the U.K. Canada and Ireland for the School of Veterinary Medicine. Students in both schools enjoy advanced research opportunities through the allied Windward Islands Research and Education.

With more than 5,000 graduates practicing – in different specialties and sub-specialties – worldwide, St. George’s has developed a well-earned reputation for excellence in the lecture hall, as well as in the operating room. Students score on parity with U.S. counterparts on standardized examinations and sometimes even exceed them, as the medical students did in 2001 on the first-time taker pass rate on the USMLE, which exceeded that from U.S. schools. In 2003, the charter class of the School of Veterinary Medicine rivaled their colleagues in their sister School of Medicine by besting the NAVLE scores from the U. S. by 14 points

Looking into the Future

Dr. Henry credits the institution’s global perspective on practicing medicine as an asset that has been invaluable to him as he travels the world with the Navy.

“The combination of location, resources, teaching and training made the experience memorable and worthwhile,” said Dr. Henry of his education at St. George’s. “The benefit of an international education is the global perspective you acquire – this allows you to have a better understanding of various medical needs around the world.”

Huge achievements, born out of intellectual curiosity and personal drive, coupled with an education formed by internationalism and excellence – at St. George’s University.

Published on 01/28/2005

Another Successful Summer in Prague

Prague Selective Group Photo in White CoatsWith high ranking officials addressing the medical students in Prague this summer, the seventh annual Prague Selective was more outstanding than ever. The Czech minister of health, Dr. Jozef Kubinyi, led a two-hour discussion one afternoon during the three-week selective, and the U.S. Ambassador to the Czech Republic, William J. Cabaniss, talked to the students adding to the prominence of the program.

The Prague Selective, the most popular selective in the School of Medicine, brings medical students from St. George’s University and other U.S. medical schools to Prague for three weeks of medical training in the Czech Republic. The students spend three weeks in hospitals in Prague under the tutelage of the local faculty and physicians.

The goals of the Prague Selective, which was founded and is directed by Dr. Martin Stransky, SGU ’83, are: to introduce the student to clinical medicine through actual observation of various patient care settings; to introduce the student to the thinking process that clinicians use when examining patients; to introduce the student to medical care in a Central European country emerging from communist rule; and to develop and foster contacts, both locally and internationally.

Instructed by local university faculty and physicians, the students rotate each morning through hospitals, both teaching and non-teaching. “The hospitals are fantastic,” Dr. Stransky said. “The students are exposed to real clinical situations and are able to scrub into surgeries and see babies in outpatient clinics.” Two afternoons a week the students attend lectures and informal seminars, where they hear from various medical professionals and learn “how to think in medicine.”

During the selective the students learned and were exposed to many different healthcare models. In addition to learning about the Czech Republic’s system, they explored the way healthcare works in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and Germany. The students are engaged in lively debate about the pros and cons of socialized medicine vs. a capitalist, market-focused society.

Prague Selective Doctors in SurgeryAt the end of the program a pass-fail, oral and written exam is administered. Upon successful completion the students receive two credits for the selective. The Prague Selective is registered in the International Health Medical Education Consortium catalog as a SGUSOM course. “It’s great for St. George’s to have such a program under their registration and have students from U.S. medical schools attend and receive credit,” Dr. Stransky commented.

70 medical students were enrolled in the selective this year, 45 of whom were from St. George’s University. The other students came from U.S. medical schools, including Albert Einstein, George Washington University, UCLA, St. Louis, SUNY Upstate, and SUNY Downstate.

To date more than 500 students have attended the selective, which is the largest program of its type. The concept for the program began in 1997 when Dr. Stransky was visiting St. George’s as a lecturer. Some students approached him and asked to shadow him in Prague for a few weeks to learn about medicine in the Czech Republic and to visit the city. From there St. George’s University decided to formalize the program and the Prague Selective became official. Dr. Stransky has since developed the program into a unique experience enjoyed and embraced by students worldwide.

Dr. Stransky’s impressive medical background at Yale University, in the Czech Republic, and at St. George’s University have enabled the Prague Selective to grow into what is today with hopes of expansion in the future.

For more information on the Prague Selective, visit and for more information on Dr. Martin Stransky, and to contact him, visit

Published on 10/06/2004



Philip Finlay Leaves University to Join Family in U.S.

Philip Finlay Side PortraitAfter serving St. George’s University as a faculty member for the past 11 years, Dr. Philip Finlay regretfully resigned from his post as Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of Medical Education at the Clinical Teaching Unit in December 2003 in order to join his family in the United States. Dr. Finlay, a Grenadian by birth, has been connected to the University since he enrolled in the School of Medicine as a student in 1979.

“The University will miss him greatly,” said Dr. Paddy Ross, Dean of Clinical Studies in the Caribbean. “Dr. Finlay is a person of immense integrity. A born teacher, he is incredibly conscientious and people enjoyed his teaching sessions.”

Growing up in Grenada, Dr. Finlay was always intrigued by medicine. After earning his undergraduate degree from the University of the West Indies, he returned to Grenada and was accepted to St. George’s University School of Medicine. Overcoming financial obstacles, he received a government scholarship and began his studies. “This was the best thing that happened to me,” Dr. Finlay said. “St. George’s has enabled me to live two lives – as a teacher and as a doctor.”

After graduating with an MD degree in 1983, Dr. Finlay interned at the General Hospital in Grenada. He then did his residency in Internal Medicine and a fellowship in Infectious Disease at the University of Miami/ Jackson Memorial Hospital. After completing his postgraduate training abroad, Dr. Finlay returned to Grenada in 1992 and joined the faculty of St. George’s and became Director of Medical Education at the General Hospital.

Dr. Finlay was instrumental in the organization of the internship program at the General Hospital in Grenada and the training of the young doctors. When Dr. Finlay was interning at the Hospital in the early 80’s, the internship program had not been formally organized. When he joined the faculty, he made this one of his goals; and he succeeded. Today, about ten interns per year work in the Hospital for one year before beginning their residencies.
Being a part of the University for so long, Dr. Finlay witnessed the many changes and improvements that have made the University what it is today. “There have been huge changes within the University and it’s amazing to see what it has become,” Dr. Finlay commented. “The administration has made a serious commitment to quality from day one and they’re continuing to make the school better and better.”

In addition to the work he has done for the University, Dr. Finlay is a well recognized physician in the Grenadian and Caribbean professional communities and beyond. As Director of the National Infectious Disease Control Unit in Grenada’s Ministry of Health from 2002 to 2003, Dr. Finlay worked closely with other stakeholders to formulate a national plan to manage HIV/AIDS in Grenada. He liaised with the Clinton Foundation to start an HIV Clinic, which became a reality in March 2003 and provides free treatment and medication for all HIV/AIDS patients. He served the Grenada Medical Association for many years and is a member of the American College of Physicians, the American Medical Association, and an associate member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America.

Dr. Finlay has joined his wife and family in the United States, where they have been since 2001. He is currently working in the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System.

“I hope that some sort of relationship can continue so that I am never too far from St. George’s University,” Dr. Finlay said. “I always want to have an association with the school. Hopefully I’ll return as a visiting professor soon.”

Published on 10/06/2004


New Chair of Medicine Named

Dr Jacobs PortraitWith the appointment a new Chair of Medicine, St. George’s University has again demonstrated its effort and commitment to ensuring excellence in education and positive growth into the 21st century.

Fred M. Jacobs, M.D., J.D., F.A.C.P., was named Chair of the Department of Medicine in the School of Medicine, effective July 1, 2004. Dr. Jacobs, who serves on the Board of Trustees and is a Professor of Medicine and Jurisprudence at the University, has been affiliated with St. George’s since 1980.

As Chair of Medicine, Dr. Jacobs will be responsible for the internal medicine education at all clinical centers and affiliated hospitals. “I want to assure that the curriculum is presented in a comprehensive and coherent manner, and that the students and faculty are fulfilling their obligations.” Dr. Jacobs said “I want to make sure that each program is presented in the context of the medical environment of the 21st Century, to see that regulations are being followed and that there is an emphasis on social, economic and ethical issues that are so important in today’s practice of medicine. Medicine today is the best it has ever been in terms of technology, pharmacology and the enormous advances in medical care. Certainly, I recognize that the practice of medicine exists in a challenging environment.”

Dr. Jacobs’ extensive professional career has prepared him well for this new role. He received his MD Degree from the University of Miami School of Medicine where he was elected to the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society. He trained in internal medicine at Maimonides Medical Center and Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City and completed a pulmonary research fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center and a Chief Residency in pulmonary disease at Kings County Hospital Center in New York. He is Board Certified in both Internal Medicine and Pulmonary Disease. He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians, the American College of Chest Physicians and the American College of Legal Medicine.

In 1969, he joined the staff at Saint Barnabas Medical Center in New Jersey where he has been Chief of Pulmonary Disease, Medical Director of the Intensive Care Unit and was elected President of the Medical Staff in 1987. Subsequently, he became Senior Vice President for Medical Affairs at Saint Barnabas, and later, Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs for the Saint Barnabas Health Care System.

Dr. Jacobs has also held many faculty positions, including Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, New Jersey Medical School. In 1990, Dr. Jacobs graduated from Rutgers University School of Law in Newark, New Jersey and is admitted to the Bar of the States of New Jersey and Florida.

Dr. Jacobs was appointed to the New Jersey State Board of Medical Examiners by then Governor Thomas Kean in 1989 and was reappointed by Governor James Florio in 1993. He served as President of the Board from 1993 to 1995.

Dr. Jacobs’ two children have both attended St. George’s University, and his wife, Miriam, is Associate Director of the Office of Career Guidance.

A more detailed biography of Dr. Jacobs can be found on our website.

Published on 10/06/2004