September 21, 2017 8:51 pm
Updated: September 25, 2017 11:50 am

Province restores $20M funding to U of S College of Medicine

WATCH ABOVE: The Saskatchewan government is restoring $20 million in funding to the University of Saskatchewan's College of Medicine.

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The province announced it will restore $20 million in funding for the University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine.

University president Peter Stoicheff said the funding announcement “helps enormously.”

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READ MORE: University of Saskatchewan funding slashed by 5.6% in provincial budget

“It being restored, you know, still means that we are dealing with a financial reality.”

The University of Saskatchewan (U of S) took an $18 million (5.6 per cent) funding cut in the 2017-18 budget. It was the largest percentage decrease in the university’s history.

At the same time, the province also withheld an annual $20 million commitment to the College of Medicine, which the university was expected to cover from base funding.

“The fact that we are not worrying about a $20 million dollar addition to the deficit, will go a very long way,” Stoicheff said.

The College of Medicine costs $95 million to run each year. The funding will go to help with the accreditation process.

“I can’t tell you how significant the province’s commitment to the financial sustainability of the College of Medicine will be to our accreditators,” Dr. Preston Smith, dean of the College of Medicine, said.

A funding deficit could have affected the college’s accreditation, as appropriate levels of funding from government are expected by accrediting agencies.

READ MORE: Probation lifted for the U of S College of Medicine

The college has already been faced with two probation periods, one in 2002 and another in 2013. It’s the only medical school in Canada to be on probation twice.

“It does means we don’t need to draw from our operating budget in order to supplement this. That the government has seen the importance of the accreditation process and this money is targeted for that,” said Stoicheff.

Accreditation will take place at the College of Medicine from Oct. 29 until Nov. 1.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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