- Associated Press - Saturday, May 16, 2015

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - A group that hopes to establish a Charlotte medical school is releasing a feasibility study on the idea later this month.

The Charlotte Observer reports (https://bit.ly/1ENNcxF ) health care and business leaders established the group a year ago and have paid a Pennsylvania consulting firm $225,000 to help in the effort.

That company helped develop medical schools in Las Vegas and Scranton, Pennsylvania, even though established schools in those states opposed the idea.

Dr. Richard Reiling, a retired Novant Health executive, says Charlotte is the largest city in the nation without a four-year medical school and the feasibility study will be released on May 27.

He said the group wants to create an independent school that could be under the auspices of the University of North Carolina Charlotte or in association with another university in the area.

North Carolina already has medical schools at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill as well as at Duke, Wake Forest, East Carolina and Campbell University.

While it doesn’t have a four-year medical school, Charlotte has a long tradition of training doctors and since the 1940s Carolinas Medical Center has had a residency program.

The University of North Carolina School of Medicine Charlotte Campus provides training for 23 third-year students and 17 fourth-year students, said Dr. Mary Hall, associate dean of the Charlotte campus.

She said Carolinas Medical Center has 300 faculty doctors, including some who have been teaching medical students and residents for decades, and doesn’t think it’s necessary to start a new medical school from scratch.

“Our suggestion is that we take the nest egg we already have and, if we need to expand that we expand that,” Hall said. “That’s what makes the most, really the only, sense.”

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Information from: The Charlotte Observer, https://www.charlotteobserver.com


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