Creighton University’s School of Medicine Regional Campus at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Arizona opened its doors June 28, as 42 future physicians attended orientation.
The new regional campus of the medical school is a partnership between the state’s oldest teaching hospital and the nationally recognized Omaha-based university. Prior to this launch, the two organizations had enjoyed a more informal relationship for many years. Now, the two have expanded their commitment and established a fully operational regional campus of Creighton’s School of Medicine.
Students, who began their medical school studies in Omaha, will complete the last two years of their medical education In Phoenix. The new regional campus becomes the second allopathic medical school in Arizona offering a Doctor of Medicine, M.D., degree.
“This is a game changer for the medical industry in Arizona,” said Patty White, president and CEO of St. Joseph. “For St. Joseph’s, the new regional medical school campus underlines our commitment to academic excellence and patient care. Together with Creighton, we are creating the medical professionals of the future.”
“This affiliation is transformational and strengthens both institutions. It expands student educational opportunities, allows for the vital recruitment of more students as our country struggles with physician shortages, creates collaborative research opportunities and leverages the faculty and administrative expertise from both organizations,” said Creighton President Timothy R. Lannon, S. J.
Creighton School of Medicine was established in 1892 as part of the Catholic, Jesuit institution. Creighton graduates practice medicine in all 50 states. Last year the school had more than 6,206 applications for 126 openings. In 2012, Creighton matched 97 percent of its graduating students with their specialties of choice.
The new Arizona regional medical school campus is the latest chapter in St. Joseph’s long history as a teaching hospital. Academic affairs at St. Joseph’s began in 1936 with the hospital’s first intern class of eight trainees. Today St. Joseph’s sponsors 10 graduate medical residency programs with more than 200 graduate medical residents and 12 specialty fellowship programs. More than 150 residents and 240 medical students from Arizona and around the U.S. come to St. Joseph’s annually for training from their home programs.
“We will be offering an environment that allows these students to excel in the practice of compassionate medicine while learning from some of the best doctors in the nation,” says James Balducci, M.D., and associate dean of the campus.
Arizona Governor Jan Brewer said that the partnership between Creighton and St. Joseph’s is “fantastic news – not only for Arizona’s medical students, but for the State as a whole. With the new Phoenix campus, Arizona is one step closer to becoming a national and international destination for medical care and research innovation.”
The campus of Creighton’s School of Medicine will be based on St. Joseph’s 55-acre campus in buildings remodeled and retrofitted expressly for this purpose. The students will include those in their third and fourth year of medical school. Faculty will be drawn from St. Joseph’s extensive specialized care physicians. The curriculum will build on the recognized strengths of St. Joseph and Creighton including a world-class faculty, a state-of-the-art curriculum and small class sizes.