Campbell University has
authorized a feasibility study to consider establishing a college of
osteopathic medicine, beginning with a charter class in August 2013.
Trustees approved funding
Aug. 4 for the study, which includes employment of a dean, consultants and
architectural planning. A decision is expected no later than May 2011.
Bob Barker, chairman of the
Campbell board of trustees, said the trustees are “unanimous in their support
of the feasibility study and very positive about the possibility of an
osteopathic medical school at Campbell.”
Osteopathic physicians are
licensed to practice medicine in all 50 states of the United States with all
the privileges and responsibilities of medical doctors. More than eight
hundred osteopathic physicians currently practice medicine in North Carolina.
Trustees approved the
feasibility study for several reasons, including the growing shortage of
primary care physicians in North Carolina, population growth, an increase in
the aging population, and national health-care reform.
According to the 2009 North
Carolina Institute of Medicine Study, North Carolina has approximately 7,660
primary care physicians or 8.8 per 10,000 population, which is below the
national average of 9.4 per 10,000 population; medical school graduates
choosing primary care dropped 50 percent between 1997 and 2005; North Carolina
is projected to experience a 12 percent decline in per capita physician supply
by 2020; the growth and aging of North Carolina’s population is expected
to increase demand (measured by annual visits to physicians) by 34
percent between 2004 and 2020; and persons 65 and older will increase by 33.7
percent by July 2020.
Campbell University began addressing health care
issues in 1985 by establishing its School of Pharmacy, which was the first new
pharmacy school founded in the United States in more than 35 years. In
addition to offering the Doctor of Pharmacy program, the school offers
undergraduate and graduate programs in Clinical Research and Pharmaceutical