Integrated Pathway Programs

Rural Medical Education Pathway Program

The Rural Medical Education (RMED) Pathway is a student-centered learning community in the NEOMED College of Medicine. RMED provides students the opportunity to train in rural communities, master rural health content, and become advocates for rural health.

Rural communities face pervasive health challenges while facing serious shortages of physicians and inadequate health care resources. Not only are there current and projected shortages of rural physicians, but there is also a massive maldistribution of physicians, even in Ohio.

Ohio physician-to-population disparity:

  • metropolitan areas = 38.9 physicians per 10,000 population
  • nonmetropolitan areas = 11.7 physicians per 10,000 population


The health care disparity between the proportion of physicians in metropolitan and nonmetropolitan is greater than the national level. Further, there are immense health disparities in rural communities. On average, life expectancy of rural individuals is 2 years lower than their suburban and urban counterparts.

Program Description

The goal of the RMED Pathway is to promote lifelong learning in rural medicine, enhance the NEOMED medical student experience, and increase student success. The RMED learning community spans all four years of medical school through curricular integration and co-curricular opportunities. As a first-year RMED student, you will develop close relationships with your first-year peers, upper-level RMED students, and receive continuous support from RMED faculty and staff. As a continuing RMED student, you will have abundant opportunities to engage in monthly rural seminars, make “house calls” (visit patients in their home), and train with rural doctors. The purpose of these RMED activities is to increase students’ interest and confidence in serving rural communities by providing them with excellent rural training opportunities.


  • Personal and professional development support from RMED faculty
  • Rural seminar series on rural health issues
  • Rural patient home visits in the second-year
  • Early exposure to training in rural communities
  • Rural-focused clerkship (third-year) and elective (fourth-year) options


  • Networking opportunities with healthcare professionals serving rural communities
  • Professional development focused on rural medical careers
  • Access to travel reimbursement and scholarships


Rebecca Johnson, MS, MEd

Integrated Pathway Programs

Department of Family & Community Medicine

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