24 Mar 2007

South Pacific school of medicine has chance to respond - says Cook Islands DIB

11:33 am on 24 March 2007

The Cook Islands Development Investment Board says the South Pacific School of Medicine will have a chance to respond to the government's reasons for withdrawing its support for the school.

The government this week announced its withdrawal based on the findings of a Ministry of Health review team led by New Zealand consultant Debbie Sorensen.

The school was set up by American Dr Larry Sands and opened last May, but now faces having its operating license revoked by the DIB.

The CEO of the DIB, Mark Short, says the findings of the review were negative in their assessment of the school and raised questions over the credibility of its operator.

"We're just going through the process whereby we write to them and provide them with the grounds for wanting to revoke their approval and we have to, under our legislation, provide them with an opportunity to respond to the reasons. After that then the board of directors will have to meet and formalise their position but at the moment we're just waiting for feedback."