Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine offers a different model of education: Heng

The new Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine provides a model of education that differs from what is currently offered at other medical schools in Singapore. Education Minister Heng Swee Keat says this especially important as Singapore's healthcare dema
The new Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine provides a model of education that differs from what is currently offered at other medical schools in Singapore. Education Minister Heng Swee Keat says this especially important as Singapore's healthcare demands evolve. -- ST FILE PHOTO: RAJ NADARAJAN 

The new Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine provides a model of education that differs from what is currently offered at other medical schools in Singapore. And this especially important as Singapore's healthcare demands evolve, said Education Minister Heng Swee Keat on Wednesday.

"Our healthcare system must remain responsive, and our healthcare professionals must be prepared to continually develop new capabilities to meet rising public expectations, and increasing demand for more specialised services," said Mr Heng who was speaking at the official opening of the annex building of Nanyang Technological University's medical school.

Located next to the medical school's headquarters at the university's campus in Novena, the three-storey annex building has been named the Toh Kian Chui Annex, in recognition of a $20 million gift from the Toh Kian Chui Foundation.

Mr Heng added that in medical education, a values-centred education is of particular importance as all doctors will need to have within them the compassion, empathy and integrity to deal with each and every patient. "They will also be faced with many difficult situations where they have to exercise difficult judgement," he said.

Mr Heng then urged students to look to Mr Toh, a construction entrepreneur and philanthropist, as a role model.

"Besides being a well-respected businessman, Mr Toh was also a compassionate man, who believes strongly in giving back to the community and helping the less fortunate," he said.

The medical school, a partnership between NTU and Imperial College London, opened its doors in August this year to 54 students. The annex building will house facilities such as a 188-seat lecture theatre, a 66-seat seminar room, an interim library and a rooftop terrace.

Health Minister Gan Kim Yong had announced last month that the Novena precinct, which the medical school currently sits on, will be transformed into HealthCity Novena - a 17-hectare integrated healthcare complex - by 2030.