This short paper presents the broad outlines of the Islamic Input in the Medical Curriculum
(IIMC). IIMC aims at resolving the crisis of dichotomy in education by integrating Islamic values in the medical curriculum.
The integration is carried out at various levels: the teacher, teaching and practice, examinations, and discipline.
Integration at the level of the teacher
The main motive of IIMC is to resolve the crisis
of duality or dichotomy manifesting as teaching Islamic sciences separately from medical disciplines by different teachers
and in different institutions. IIMC resolves the crisis of duality by insisting that Islamic concepts should be taught by
the same people who teach medical disciplines. All lecturers in the Kulliyah of Medicine go through a Diploma in Islamic Studies
(DIS) whose modules are exactly the same as the modules of IIMC. This prepares them to be effective teachers of IIMC. The
teaching material of IIMC has been prepared and tested over the past 7 years. Synopses of all lectures for years 1 -5 are
available at http://omarkasule.tripod.com.
Integration of teaching and practice
Since the start of the Kulliyah in 1997, we have
worked towards integrating Islamic values and concepts in the teaching and examination of basic and clinical medical sciences.
The expectation is that our graduates will be able to integrate Islamic moral and legal values in their practice of medicine
because they went through an integrated education system.
Integration of the examination
Questions on IIMC appear in block, first professional,
and final professional examinations. The block and first professional examinations have usually featured short answer question
(SAQ) whereas the final professional examination has featured multiple choice question in addition. In the clinical and oral
examinations students may be asked questions on the Islamic Input pertinent to the case in question.
Integration at the discipline or departmental level
Two departments made very innovative and effective
approaches. The Department of orthopedics runs a 1-day practical program for each student rotation. The students are given
description of an orthopaedic condition and they have to work out both the surgical treatment and also the implications of
the illness and its treatment in ‘ibadat obligations. They are given 1-2
hours to work on the case and then to make a public presentation. An interesting feature of this is that the student act out
the solutions so the whole exercise is very practical. The Department of Internal Medicine has also been asking students to
look up hadith references on specific medical conditions and discuss them with their lecturers. The Department of Obstetrics
and Gynecology at one time tried out debates on issues of ethical controversy and these debates generated a lot of interest.
Paradigm of reading 2 books
IIMC follows the Islamic paradigm of reading 2 books,
the book of revelation, kitaab al wahy, and the book of empirical science, kitaab al kawn. Both books contain signs of Allah, ayaat al llaah,
and must be read together. It is a mistake to read one of the books and neglect the other. The solution to the crisis of duality
in the ummah starts from joint reading of the 2 books, al jam ‘u baina al qira
atain. Thus medical scientists who are involved in IIMC read the signs in both books.
Vision of IIMC
The vision of IIC has two separate but closely related components: Islamization and legal medicine.
Islamisation deals with putting medicine in an Islamic context in terms of epistemology, values, and attitudes. Legal medicine
deals with issues of application of the Law (fiqh) from a medical perspective.
Objectives of IIMC
IIMC has 5 main objectives: (a) introduction
of Islamic paradigms and concepts in general as they relate to medicine, mafahiim Islamiyat
fi al Tibb. (b) strengthening faith, iman, through study of Allah’s sign
in the human body (c) appreciating and understanding the juridical, fiqh, aspects
of health and disease, al fiqh al tibbi. (d) understanding the social issues in medical practice and research and (e)
Professional etiquette, adab al tabiib, from
the Islamic perspective.
We feel that IIC helps the future physician prepare for the heavy trust, the amanat of being professionally competent. He must be highly motivated. He must have personal, professional, intellectual,
and spiritual development programs. He must know the proper etiquette of dealing with patients and colleagues. He also must
know and avoid professional malpractice. He needs to be equipped with leadership and managerial skills to be able to function
properly as a head of a medical team.