Early assurance. That’s what a new Northeast Ohio Medical University partnership provides Baldwin-Wallace University students seeking a pathway to a medical degree. New pre-med students from B-W will be admitted beginning this fall, with recruiting and admission focused on students from rural or urban communities that have a history of being medically underserved.
Called the NEOMED-BW Partnership for Healthcare Equity, the Partnership enables BW students to receive provisional admission to NEOMED’s College of Medicine. Students interested in NEOMED’s Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree may seek early provisional admission to NEOMED in their second year of BW’s Primary Health Care Advancement undergraduate program. They will receive a holistic review of their academic preparation and commitment to primary care for the medically underserved, and upon successful graduation with a B.S. in public health and a minor in biology, will be admitted to NEOMED.
By the year 2020, the American Academy of Family Physicians predicts a shortage of some 40,000 family doctors in the United States. Studies have shown that patients are more likely to trust and respond to physicians who understand their culture and can communicate with them. The new NEOMED-BW Partnership will provide educational access to additional students whose cultural backgrounds equip them to fill the gap.
“Many patients seek physicians who understand their cultural background,’’ says Erik Porfeli, Ph.D., associate dean for community engagement and admission. “We are eager to train a diverse medical student body to meet the diversity of the health care needs and preferences of our community members. Concurrently, we offer our students a wide range of community-based experiences with a particular emphasis on providing primary care to medically underserved Ohio communities.”