This is an Entry to the Government Best Practice Recognition Awards


Medicine: Science, Art, Career


West Visayas State University

Best practice Focus Area(s)

Leadership, Human resource


Medicine: Science, Art, Career (Block 1) was conceptualized by the faculty in 2002 as an introductory block to Medicine. It integrated various topics and employed innovative teaching strategies which are mainly subsumed under two major modules of 1) medical perspectives and 2) community and family health to produce Filipino physicians faithful and committed to the WVSU College of Medicine institutional vision of producing “a community of physicians who are socially accountable, enlightened and professionally competent.” These topics are introduced early in the medical program to give emphasis and allow the developing doctor to develop these competencies.

Background and Problem

Since the 1990s, there has been a clamor for changes in the curriculum of the WVSU-COM because of observations that graduates seemed to have veered away from the values of service, social accountability, and devotion to the health needs of the Filipino people that the College envisioned. Thus, Block l evolved with the following objectives:

  • Appreciation and acceptance of the responsibilities that accompany the practice of a good physician and the breadth and limitations of the scope of medical practice.
  • Self-awareness and the development of appropriate values, attitudes, and behaviors in the course of understanding the roles that the physician assumes in practice and the tasks and functions that are to be fulfilled in each role.
  • Awareness of the social, cultural, economic, gender, and religious factors that influence the health of individuals and families and its communities, and development of attitudes that integrate social accountability and compassion in medical practice.

Solution and Impact

The West Visayas State University College of Medicine stated as its vision, “A community of physicians: socially accountable, enlightened and professionally competent, committed to delivering primary health care with compassion, dedicated to continuing medical education, research, and extension and devoted to serving the health needs of the Filipino people. “ This vision is embodied in the objectives that students should accomplish upon graduation. These are:

  1. Apply requisite knowledge of the basic medical sciences in the performance of fundamental skills for the practice of medicine.
  2. Develop essential habits and proper attitudes in the acquisition of knowledge and humane treatment of the patients.
  3. Apply principles of professional ethics in the practice of medicine. ‘
  4. Inculcate social awareness and empathy in the course of serving the medical and psychological needs of the community.
  5. Utilize appropriate knowledge, skills, and experiences in their academic endeavors, scientific research, or service, either directly or indirectly to the community in varying degrees and depths.

To achieve the Vision / Mission and Objectives set by the College of Medicine, it is apparent that classroom instruction and other academic activities are sufficient. Social accountability, professionalism, compassion, service, are best taught using (1) opportunities for students to gain perspective in the lives of patients; (2) structured time for reflection on those experiences; and (3) focused mentoring to ensure that these events convert to positive, formative learning experiences. A more holistic approach and developing compassionate and socially accountable graduates became the impetus for Block 1 which introduced these threads to run across the length of the medical curriculum of the WVSU-COM. New modules were included, with the end given developing the medical student in terms of self-awareness, attitudes, values, empathic thinking, stress management, and coping skills, social accountability, and health social science perspectives.


These innovative approaches in Block 1 have earned recognition in an international conference where it was presented. It also gained appreciation and praise from students, administrators, and certifying bodies like PAASCU, CHED, APMC, and PRC. Continuous review and improvement of the block ensure that instructions are effective and engaging  and sure to enhance students’ learning and achievement.