Future of state’s medical education system signed
The Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE), the University of Nevada, Reno and the University of Nevada Las Vegas have finalized an agreement that will ensure Nevada’s two public medical schools each has its own faculty as well as thriving clinical practices.
These elements will assure high quality medical education opportunities for students statewide and also will expand patient care across the state.
Nevada legislators made a significant investment in 2015 to expand the state’s medical education system by providing start-up funds for the University of Nevada, Las Vegas School of Medicine (UNLV Medicine), additional funds for the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med) and $10 million toward building new graduate medical education (GME) programs.
“We wanted to honor that commitment by making the launch of UNLV Medicine in Las Vegas and expansion of UNR Med in Reno as smooth as possible, while at the same time sustaining the faculty practice, physicians, residents and fellowships based in Las Vegas,” explained James Dean Leavitt, J.D., chair of the Board of Regents Health Sciences System Committee. “I’m proud to say the steadfast work of NSHE, the Statewide Steering Committee, UNLV and UNR leadership and its medical school deans over the past year has accomplished that goal.”
Chancellor John White, who has been involved in the negotiations, added, “The fundamental focus in the development of the practice plan agreement was ensuring stability in the operations that support public medical education and GME programs with the aim of improving the overall health care outcomes in southern Nevada. Both schools have worked diligently to that end.”
By July 1, 2017, UNR Med’s education and clinical operation will be enhanced in Reno in order to accommodate all or most students in Reno for all four years of their medical education; previously, it was necessary for most students to go to Las Vegas to complete clinical rotations in their third and fourth years. UNR Med’s faculty practices will continue to grow in Reno through partnerships with community physicians and hospitals, particularly its comprehensive affiliation with Renown Health. At the same time, UNLV Medicine is creating its own comprehensive faculty practice plan in Las Vegas and is transitioning Las Vegas-based faculty physicians, residents and fellowships to its clinical enterprise.
“This agreement affirms our shared commitment to medical education, so that together we can further improve medical care and health services for all Nevadans,” said University of Nevada, Reno President Marc Johnson. “I am pleased that our medical faculty, who have served medical students and patients superbly in southern Nevada, will continue to be part of Nevada’s medical education system.”
“This agreement contributes to the broader vision of the UNLV School of Medicine and provides necessary infrastructure that will help ensure our long-term success,” said UNLV President Len Jessup. “It adds further stability to the program as we prepare to welcome our charter class in less than a year.”