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REF NO.: 103

SUBJECT: New organization offers unique education and conferencing services

DATE: Jan. 25

The official launch of Professional Development and Conferencing Services (PDCS) took place Thursday, Jan. 25, from 3-5 p.m. in the main auditorium of the Faculty of Medicine, Health Sciences Centre.
            Dr. James Rourke, dean of Medicine, introduced the newest division of the Faculty of Medicine. John Abbott, deputy minister of Health and Community Services, brought greetings on behalf of the provincial government. Other speakers included Paul Dube, executive director of the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Technology Industries (NATI); and Fran Kirby, director of PDCS.
            “PDCS is a new division of the Faculty of Medicine resulting from the merger of the Office of Professional Development and the Telehealth and Educational Technologies Resource Agency (TETRA),” said Ms. Kirby. “We support the continuing professional development mission of the Faculty of Medicine by providing innovative onsite and distance learning opportunities for Newfoundland and Labrador’s health care professionals, Memorial faculty and Memorial students. By providing opportunities for health care professionals to update and enhance their skills, we positively impact health outcomes in the province.”
As a branch of the Faculty of Medicine at Memorial University, PDCS provides internal and external clients with a host of unique education and conferencing services.
            “We now boast an extensive background in continuing medical education, professional development, e-Learning and conferencing services,” said Ms. Kirby. “Our conferencing infrastructure is state-of-the-art. The merger of OPD and TETRA and their transformation into PDCS position the organization in the vanguard of distributed learning.”
            An important example of PDCS’ initiative to provide high-quality medical education and flexible learning opportunities is the web portal. PDCS championed the formation of an eLearning Consortium consisting of 14 Canadian medical schools who’s mandate is to provide quality online learning opportunities for health professionals. “The offerings are unparalleled in their breadth and depth, covering 11 therapeutic areas with over 30 courses,” said Ms. Kirby. “As the endorsed provider of online continuing professional development for the College of Family Physicians of Canada, is the trusted source of credible, accessible and flexible medical education in Canada.”

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For further information contact Sharon Gray, communications co-ordinator (health sciences) at (709) 777-8397 or; or Terri Yeske, manager marketing and business development PDCS (709) 777-8644 or


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