1. In the Malaysian context, private medical schools (PMS) are largely divided into few catagories based on the ownerships, niche curricula and diverse experiences (including internationalization). These categories are far from complete but as Daniel Levitin rightly mentioned in The Organized Mind, catagorization such as the above is necessary in order to conquer information overload and hence simplify understanding.
2. I believe the time when private medical schools work in silos has passed. The new slogan should be: to avoid competition and to work together toward collaboration. A win-win situation as notified by Stephen Covey in the 7- Habit of Highly Effective People, must be to emphasize on the genuine agendas with some form of mutual respect and common understanding to achieve beneficial academic goal.
3. Association of Private Medical Schools is at the founding stage. It is my hope that this association can discuss issues related to private medical education and collaborate resources for the benefit of its members. In the same note, University of similar niche medical curricula should be encouraged to form a committee which resulted in fair sharing of resources as well as experiences. Not to be forgotten, the fact that public universities have already had Dean Council and Council for the Public teaching Hospitals to discuss issues, address their common problems and chart future direction.
4. MOE must have a clear vision to align private medical institutions; in order to push medicine as the national agenda for the next decade. Academy of Medicine should work hand-in-hand with the Academy of Science to draft clear vision, mission and objective to be targetted at, for the next decade. The Ministry of Health as guardian of health in this country is expected to think strategically into the future needs and demands of the rakyat and formulate strategies into the next decade. If this is not being done, Malaysia will be losing in term of strategic health leadership and priorities.
5. As goverment is pushing internationalization agenda in higher education, ways and means have to be developed so that equal chances are given to players irrespective of who and where they are. It simply means that some birocratic processes have to be simplified and made available for direct accessibility. Coaching similar to enterpreneural assistance can be provided from time to time for new universities to grow faster without repeating the same mistakes made by the predecessors. Though I acknowledge that mistakes are necessary for learning, in the end, time wasted can be avoided as long the desire for learning is kept alive and kicking.