About HKUMed

We are the longest established faculty in Hong Kong's tertiary education

Development of the Faculty

Created out of the Hong Kong College of Medicine, which was founded in 1887 as the Hong Kong College of Medicine for Chinese, the Faculty was accorded the position of premier faculty when the University opened in 1912. For 130 years, the Faculty and its predecessors have been fostering the development of Western medicine and biomedical science in the East and playing a pioneering role in medical education and training. A faithful chronicle would be necessary to pay tribute to the many great men and women and the generous benefactors who helped to shape and build this Faculty, and the list would inevitably begin with Dr. Sun Yat Sen, who was one of the first two graduates in 1892 of the Hong Kong College of Medicine for Chinese.

Hong Kong is almost totally dependent on local medical graduates for its health care services. Until the establishment of the second medical school in 1981, our Faculty had been the only institute providing medical graduates in Hong Kong. Today, the standard of health of the people of Hong Kong is comparable to any developed country in the world. This is, to a large measure, due to the efforts of our graduates made in a century.

From its modest beginning with only a few candidates, the annual enrollment of undergraduate students now stands at about 560 for its six full-time programmes of Bachelor of Medicine & Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS), Bachelor of Nursing (BNurs), Bachelor of Chinese Medicine (BChinMed), Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm), Bachelor of Biomedical Sciences (BBiomedSc) and Bachelor of Arts and Sciences in Global Health and Development [BASc(GHD)]. Teaching is well-supported by more than 390 full-time teaching staff coming from the 14 departments and four schools of the Faculty.

The 14 departments are Anaesthesiology, Clinical Oncology, Diagnostic Radiology, Family Medicine and Primary Care, Medicine, Microbiology, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Ophthalmology, Orthopaedics and Traumatology, Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Pathology, Pharmacology and Pharmacy, Psychiatry, and Surgery, and the four schools are School of Biomedical Sciences, School of Chinese Medicine, School of Nursing and School of Public Health. Our teaching is also assisted by about 3,000 honorary teachers, most of whom are doctors in public hospitals or private practitioners.

The Faculty has emerged as a leader in medical and healthcare education in Asia. In 1997, we took the lead to reform our MBBS programme and we are the first medical school in Asia that adopts a system-based curriculum using student-centred and problem-based learning approach, an approach that has been serving very well our dual aims of equipping students with skills and knowledge, and helping them to develop into humane and ethical healthcare professionals. Our curriculum has set a standard for the region, with other disciplines and institutions following our lead.

The educational reform in 2012 has brought in new insights in the restructuring of our undergraduate programmes. The “extra-year” is being used to expose students to disciplines and areas of study outside their own professional core and to allow greater flexibility for them to engage in enriching learning experience through overseas exchange. In 2016, an “Enrichment Year” in Year 3 of the medical curriculum has been introduced to push medical and health sciences education to new frontiers, whereby students may opt to pursue an additional degree, broadening coursework or experiential learning at HKU as well as outside of Hong Kong at leading institutions and settings worldwide.

The Faculty has consistently been ranked as one of the top in Asia in the category “Clinical, Pre-clinical and Health Universities” of the Times Higher Education World University Rankings.

Teaching Facilities

The Medical Campus

Medical education has been at the heart of the University’s history since our inception. We are proud to continue our tradition of pioneering achievement from our campus on Sassoon Road, having trained thousands of healthcare practitioners and scientists, as well as internationally renowned researchers and policy-makers. The Medical Campus on Sassoon Road accommodates teaching departments/schools and their research laboratories, as well as various state-of-the-art facilities.

The new Faculty Learning Commons provides a shared space where students and teachers can meet up and participate in various kinds of teaching and learning activities, while the newly refurbished Cheung Chin Lan Hong Atrium is the built expression of HKUMed/s core mission to enrich the total learning experience for students to socialise and connect with one another outside of class.

A comprehensive plan for development has been put forward to answer the demand for space at the Medical Campus. The Sassoon Road campus will be transformed into a big contiguous state-of-the-science medical campus stretching al the way from Queen Mary Hospital on Pokfulam Road at the top, to the Victoria Road roundabout at the bottom. A reinvigorated built environment will continue to provide exceptional support and opportunities for students, as well as taking our research with the advent of new technologies to the next level.

Sassoon Road Campus Redevelopment

The comprehensive development plan aims to not only increase physical space of the Medical Campus, but to enhance the learning environment for our students and the research space for our scientists and scholars.

A new Annex Building is being constructed at south end campus, which will provide its users to panoramic views of the ocean and lush greenery and around 1,967 operational floor area. An extension at the William M W Mong Block will also provide additional teaching and learning space.

Expected to open in 2021, the development at 3 Sassoon Road will be a much-needed addition for the Faculty which provides more than 10,000 square metres of operational floor area, which will house the School of Nursing and the School of Chinese Medicine. It will be used for lecture theatres, seminar rooms, learning commons, clinical skills training centres, research laboratories, a Chinese medicine out-patient clinic, as well as offices for administrators and researchers.

Faculty First

The Faculty has always been at the forefront of medical research and development of new clinical services for the benefit of mankind. With our researchers’ toil and persistence, we have made important contributions to the study and treatment of cancers and liver diseases, and have made notable advances in tissue typing, spinal surgery, infectious diseases, in-vitro fertilisation, endocrinology and tobacco-related diseases.


Pioneered anterior approach for surgical treatment of spinal tuberculosis, known as the “Hong Kong Operation”


First transoral approach performed for the surgical treatment of upper cervical spine dislocations and tuberculosis in the world


First Pharyngo-laryngo-oesophagectomy in the world First open-heart surgery in Hong Kong


First kidney transplant in Hong Kong


First microsurgical thumb replant in Hong Kong


First antenatal screening for hereditary blood disease established in Hong Kong


First maxillary swing operation for recurrent nasopharyngectomy in the world


First bone marrow transplant in Hong Kong


First liver transplant in Hong Kong


First heart transplant in Hong Kong


First allogeneic cord blood transplant in Hong Kong

First emergency adult-to-adult left lobe living donor liver transplant in the world


First lung transplant in Hong Kong

First baby in Hong Kong conceived through intracytoplasmic sperm injection was delivered


First in the world to conduct an adult-to-adult right lobe living donor liver transplant

First in Asia to show improved respiratory health in children in response to pollutant reduction after the implement of anti-air pollution law


First intervertebral disc transplant in humans in the world


First radiofrequency ablation for cancers in Hong Kong

First catheter based endomyocardial transplant of autologous bone marrow stem cell for treatment of severe coronary artery diseases in the world


First to discover the SARS coronavirus

First to identify the source of SARS coronavirus infection


First to characterize the epidemiology of SARS coronavirus

The First domino liver transplant in Hong Kong


First to identify the natural reservoir of SARS coronavirus


First in the world to develop and launch a publicly accessible index (Hedley Environmental Index) with hourly estimation of air pollution impact on adverse health outcomes and economic costs


First remotely controlled expandable device implantation surgery to treat children with scoliosis in the world


First to develop a patented prescription drug, an oral arsenic trioxide preparation for the treatment of acute promyelocytic leukaemia

First combined heart and liver transplant in Hong Kong


First dual thoracic spinal cord stimulation for heart failure in the world

First extra-cranial intravenous-cranial vascular bypass and craniofacial resection for locally advanced recurrent nasopharyngeal carcinoma in the world


First in the world to describe a model of coronavirus evolution, based on the 23 novel human and animal coronaviruses discovered over 10 years


First to characterize the epidemiology of H7N9 influenza in the world


First subcutaneous implantable cardioverter defibrillator in Asia

First exome-chip analysis of lipid traits in Chinese


First live birth by assisted reproduction with preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) using next generation sequencing for couples having chromosomal error in Hong Kong


Celebrated the 130th Anniversary


First cohort of students undertaking the MBBS Enrichment Year


21 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam
Hong Kong SAR, China

+852 3917 9175


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