LAHORE: Former chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice (r) Jawwad S Khawaja urged the medical teachers to act like mentors and help students pursue knowledge by encouraging them towards self-reliance.During the distribution ceremony of the Certificate in Medical Teaching (CMT) Programme, launched by the University of Health Sciences (UHS) under the International Strategic Partnership in Research and Education (INSPIRE) project, sponsored by the British Council, he said, “Mentors are different because they guide rather than just share information. They have already achieved what the students want and are aware of the pitfalls and discouragements that the students would encounter along the way,” Justice Khawaja explained.He said that the attitude of a doctor could make an appreciable difference on the psychological response of the patient, who feels he was misunderstood and craves empathy.British Council Director Kevin McLaven said that it was important to invest in the training of local health professionals and constantly update their skills, so that they were capable of treating different diseases. He added that medical education was an important element of medicine that focused on providing training and continuous professional development to health practitioners.UHS Vice Chancellor Gen (r) Prof Muhammad Aslam said any project that aimed to strengthen local medical profession had the potential to affect millions. The CMT programme could be groundbreaking in terms of bringing positive change on the health industry as well as delivery of quality services, he added.University of Liverpool’s Head of Educational Development Division Prof Ian Willis said that the programme aimed at making a difference in classroom teaching. He added that the credit of its success goes to its participants, adding that efforts were underway to get international accreditation of the CMT programme.UHS’s Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching Director Prof Arif Rashid Khwaja, who is also the focal person for the programme, said that the university was collaborating with the University of Liverpool under the INSPIRE banner to develop an innovative and sustainable project aimed to increase efficiency, enhance research and secure funding for health projects. The course was taught on campus in two sessions. During the teaching sessions, the students carried out a series of activities at their workplace and gathered evidence of their teaching practice. The topics covered in the course included learning process of students, planning and delivering lectures to large and small groups, principles of assessment, and evaluation and innovation.Arif Rashid Khawaja said that so far seven batches had passed out and more than 400 medical teachers had completed the training. Moreover, nine research projects had also been completed, which were supervised by the University of Liverpool.