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Western medicine graduate suing school over quality of residency

Snow covers the Western University campus. Jake Jeffrey / 980 CFPL

Call them allegations of academic malpractice.

A physician graduate of Western University’s medical school is suing his alma mater based on what he says was an inadequate microbiology residency, that ruined his career.

Dr. James Stuart alleges in the $11-million lawsuit that he was unable to pass a medical microbiology certification exam because of the “substandard” nature of the five-year post-graduate microbiology residency at Western’s Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry.

The allegations have not been tested in court, but in a statement of claim, Stuart says the program experienced faculty departures and student enrollment to the point where he was the sole candidate remaining. The suit also alleges that no students have been enrolled in the program since he graduated.

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“Dr. Stuart has been deprived of his livelihood and career potential in medicine, has lost his competitive advantage and suffered emotional distress, humiliation and anguish,” says the statement of claim, which was originally broken by the Toronto Star.

Stuart says he brought concerns about insufficient supervision, feedback and testing to school officials, but, despite their assurances, no improvements were made.

Western has not yet filed a statement of defence, and a spokesperson for the university said Tuesday it does not comment on legal matters.

The university is seeking to appeal a judge’s ruling made late last year that allowed the lawsuit to proceed.

*With files from The Canadian Press

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