What school is "SAFR1 - Faculty of Health Sciences University"

Hello all around.

I’m doctor shopping at the moment – no! not that kind of doctor shopping – and I’ve come across one in my provider search that seems promising. From the name it appears that he is from one of the German-speaking countries, or at least raised in a German family, but I can’t figure out where he got his medical training.

I’ll repeat the school information here for those using small screens, Tapatalk or what have you.

SAFR1 - Faculty Of Health Sciences University

“SAFR” strikes me as perhaps being short for “South Africa.” I see a few South African universities via Google that have listed a “Faculty of Health Sciences” (which appears to mean a health sciences graduate school).

I’d guess Afrikaans rather than German as well.

While it’s entirely possible that this doctor was trained in SA or was even born and raised there, the name is unquestionably German as it is an actual word in that language, and not a word in Dutch or Afrikaans as far as I know. “As far as I know” means I can read enough Dutch to know that the components of the German word, if translated into Dutch, would be significantly different, so presumably also for Afrikaans.

I know people of Indian descent who have gone to med school in Dominica, and one of Hungarian descent who attended in Mexico, so I’m not sure how that is exclusionary.


Is it possible that this looks misprinted, garbled or truncated in whatever directory you are consulting? Lots of universities have a “Faculty of Health Sciences”, and I’d regard a phrase like “Faculty of Health Sciences, University of [Place]” as pretty common. Wikipedia in fact suggests that “Faculty of Health Sciences” is the usual title for a professional medical school in South African universities, with only the University of KwaZulu-Natal having a “School of Medicine” instead. But this terminology is common in many universities outside South Africa too.

“SAFR1” means nothing to me, but “SAFRI” is the Southern African Faimer Regional Institute, which is the name of a fellowship programme for medical education that operates through a number of South African universities. Note that it’s a programme aimed at producing medical educators, not medics.

For what it’s worth, there is a signficant number of people in South African with German ancestry and/or German names. In fact Afrikaaners are generally considered to be of mixed Dutch, German and French descent.

From the link it doesn’t seem like they provide the actual MD degree curriculum, though. Perhaps it’s some affiliated institution.

It’s the online provider search for my health plan, but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if they got this name wrong, especially considering that it’s not in the United States and that different countries have different customs and nomenclature when it comes to universities and their schools and departments.

I only meant the name was 100% German in its spelling and heritage; I know it doesn’t preclude its owner from being 100% South African.

French, too? I learn something new every day.

In the United States such a directory typically lists just the name of the university followed by the phrase “School of Health Sciences” or some variant of the same. Whether in reference to a department, school, or the entire University, the work ‘faculty’, in the States, usually means the currently active professors* collectively, rather than the institution or department as an ongoing entity.

*Meaning, of course, all the instructors, whether they are full professors or not.

The site has a list of their graduates , and then lists their MD school.
Curious why the word University got used on its own, its like they dropped the name of the university. "Univeristy of ___________ " , But you can see it there at the safri site anyway

The SAFRI programme is aimed at producing medical educators, i.e. people who are competent to teach medicine. Participants in the programme would typically already have a professsional medical qualification. Saying of a doctor that he has participatedin SAFRI doesn’t tell us anything about where he received his medical education; just that, having received it, and having qualified to practice medicine, he subsequently studied at one of a number of South African universities to become a medical educator.

As to why the word “University” got used on its own, my guess is that this is simply a data entry error. The doctor’s medical education should be recorded has having been given in, e.g., the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, but the words “of Cape Town” have been inadvertantly dropped. I can’t make any sense of it otherwise.

The medical educator bit would be consistent with a faculty of health sciences listing, when you think about it.

Not particularly. The doctor’s primary medical education was probably received in a “Faculty of Health Sciences”. Outside the US, and possibly a couple of other places, “Faculty” is simply an administrative division of a university - usually a fairly high-level division. My own university was divided into Faculties (of Arts, of Engineering, of Health Sciences . . . ), the Faculties were divided into Schools and the Schools were (sometimes) further divided into Departments. So for example the Faculty of Health Sciences contained Schools of Dental Medicine, of Medicine, of Nursing and Midwifery and of Pharmacy, and the School of Medicine contained Departments of Anatomy, Clinical Medicine, Haematology, Immunology, Paediatrics, etc. Everyone who qualified as a doctor (or a dentist, nurse, midwife or pharmacist) received their education in the Faculty of Health Sciences.