JWU's Center for Physician Assistant Studies and Brown University's Alpert Medical School have reached a mutual agreement to explore areas of potential cooperation, including sharing training facilities, jointly arranging lectures, pursuing educational grants, and engaging in cost-sharing.
The formal agreement, signed earlier this month, could expand inter-professional education in line with emerging trends in how health care is delivered.
“The collaborative training of physicians, physician assistants, and other members of the interprofessional health care team is an evolving national educational initiative,” said Dr. George Bottomley, director of JWU's Center for Physician Assistant Studies. “We look forward to our partnership with the Alpert Medical School and the development of a patient-centered, humanistic learning model that will serve our students and their future patients.”
New Model for Patient-centered Care
As health care becomes more team-based, the education of medical professionals must include a greater emphasis on teamwork, information sharing and group work.
“The new model of health care is patient-focused, IT-driven, and team-based,” said Dr. Edward Wing, dean of medicine and biological science at Brown. “Alpert Medical School is fortunate to partner with JWU to explore interdisciplinary training opportunities with its physician assistant program. This new collaboration makes good sense as we work toward expanding the entire healthcare workforce in Rhode Island and beyond.”
Proximity of Facilities and Interests
The agreement comes at a time when both universities have been making major investments in new teaching facilities just blocks away from each other in Providence's Knowledge District.
The 18,000-square-foot building that JWU is currently renovating to house its developing PA program is roughly 1000 feet from Brown's medical school, which opened in 2011.
In addition to potentially pooling resources, Brown and JWU hope to find mutual efficiencies and innovative working methods to better prepare students for the future of patient-centered care delivery.
“Our two institutions have strong mutual interests and compatibilities in the area of primary care education that should well serve the community, our students, and our great universities,” said Jeffrey Senese, JWU vice president of academic affairs. “We are thrilled to have the honor of working with them.”