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At the Crossroads of the Mad-Waukee Healthcare Corridor
establishing Wisconsin's THird Medical school
Local leaders are working with consultants to establish the state’s third medical college, to be named the Osteopathic Medical College of Wisconsin (OMCoW), in Jefferson, Wisconsin. At the equipoise of one of the most significant healthcare corridors in the country, Jefferson County has the potential to emerge as the State’s Primary Care hub with the creation of the College. And, there is a superb network of regional hospitals with which to affiliate.
What makes this initiative of particular note is our County’s ability to serve as a living laboratory for the College. As a medical school focusing on osteopathic medicine it will aim to fill the shortfall of primary care doctors in Wisconsin (especially within more rural areas) while developing practitioners focusing on the osteopathic tradition (and increasingly the healthcare industry’s focus) of preventative healthcare and well-being. The County’s small-town setting with immense outdoor recreation fits this initiative at its core.
There are few new Allopathic Medical Schools coming online in America, but, driven by a “social movement” for Primary Care, there are nearly twenty Osteopathic Colleges in various stages of development. Medical educators view this as “the historic moment” when Primary Care will displace specialization. This is not simply about building new medical schools, it is about changing how medicine is practiced. The idea of a College of Osteopathic Medicine in Wisconsin has been pursued for the last decade, but no one has been able to aggregate the necessary partners. Furthermore, no one has been able to envision a new approach to residency programs, now funded by a worn-out Medicare model. The Osteopathic Medical College of Wisconsin intends to do just that.
Collaborating with the American Association of Osteopathic Medical Colleges, the Osteopathic Medical College of Wisconsin will be a best-in-class institution. Its creation will be driven by a funding consortium, modeled on the success at the UW, charged with a goal of $125 million. The consortium model allows for immediate ownership by the College. It also promotes a wide circle of partners ensuring immediate and ongoing philanthropy to sustain the College. The new College has been incorporated. An initial board has been established and is currently recruiting a wide range of notable leaders.
The College will be sited in Jefferson, Wisconsin. The City is wonderfully positioned between Madison and Milwaukee. The support from the City, its Mayor, City Administrator and City Council, as well support from Jefferson County, has been excellent. At the equipoise of one of the most significant healthcare corridors in the country, Jefferson has the potential to emerge as the State’s Primary Care hub with the creation of the College. There is a superb network of regional hospitals with which to affiliate. A larger campus is now being considered, distinct from the earlier, historic St. Coletta campus. The Boldt Company has done Land Due Diligence on the new site and has developed a Conceptual Site Plan.