OMAHA, Neb. and PHOENIX, Ariz., June 30 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha and St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix today announced an academic affiliation that will create a Creighton medical school presence in Phoenix.
The Phoenix campus will be formally known as Creighton University School of Medicine at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center, a member of Catholic Healthcare West. The Creighton campus in Phoenix becomes the only Catholic medical school campus located west of Omaha.
The affiliation will expand educational opportunities available to Creighton medical students while allowing the University's School of Medicine to recruit more students, beginning with the 2010 first-year class. The collaboration is also designed to strengthen the medical reputations of both institutions, promote the sharing of faculty and administrative expertise, create collaborative research opportunities, and enhance medical services for Arizona patients, officials said.
Since 2005, Creighton, a comprehensive Jesuit Catholic university, and St Joseph's have had an agreement that sends Creighton medical students to Phoenix for one-month rotations.
Under the new affiliation, Creighton will establish a fully operational campus at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center that will offer two full years of clinical training. Creighton will expand its entering medical class from 126 to 152 students, starting in 2010. All students will train for their first two years in Omaha. Starting in 2012, 42 third-year students will move to Phoenix for their final two years of training, and 110 third-year students will remain in Omaha. The Phoenix campus will graduate its first students in 2014.
"It is a win-win for everyone," said the Rev. John P. Schlegel, Creighton University president. "This academic affiliation strengthens both institutions, assures quality health care, and continues our long-term traditions of academic excellence and devotion to service as well as a commitment to Catholic values and traditions. Both Creighton and St. Joseph's believe it is important that students in the western United States have regional access to a Catholic-based medical education."
Linda Hunt, service area president for Catholic Healthcare West Arizona, said the newly forged relationship will help address a growing shortage of U.S. physicians nationwide, including the Phoenix area.
"Our new partnership with Creighton will fill a vital need for educational experiences and physician training, and it will provide numerous possibilities regarding collaborative research projects," she said.
While the Creighton University School of Medicine will become St. Joseph's primary academic affiliation, St. Joseph's will continue its affiliations with The University of Arizona College of Medicine and more than 20 other U.S. medical schools. Creighton will also continue to have numerous clinical rotations for its medical students in and outside Omaha.
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