Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Med School to Have Record Class

UMMC issued the following press release.

Prospects for injecting more doctors into the state’s health-care bloodstream are bolstered this fall by the School of Medicine at the University of Mississippi Medical Center enrolling its largest entering class ever.

The medical school bumped up its admissions number to 165, up from last year’s figure of 155, which had been the most ample to date.

The news is being celebrated by, among others, Dr. LouAnn Woodward, vice chancellor for health affairs and dean of the School of Medicine; and Dr. Loretta Jackson-Williams, vice dean for medical education and professor of emergency medicine.

“In the long run, expanding the medical school class makes a big difference for the physician workforce in the state,” Jackson-Williams said.

“There are a number of physicians who, even if they don’t complete their residency (specialty training) here, are more likely to come back to Mississippi because they were educated in the medical school here.

“At the same time, it’s important for our state to continue to support the residency programs here. Many of those who come from other states to do their residencies at the Medical Center love it here, and they stay.”During the School of Medicine’s White Coat Ceremony – the formal welcome to entering students held each August – Dr. Stephen Manuel noted that, after last year’s opening of the School of Medicine’s new home, the medical school was able to expand the entering class from 145, then to 155, before adding another 10 this year.

“That’s why the building was built,” said Manuel, associate dean for medical school admissions and assistant professor of family medicine.

As UMMC administrators decided on a goal for the medical school’s class, they considered several factors which, for now, add up to 165: the scope of the physician workforce in Mississippi, the applicant pool, the retention rate for medical school graduates and the number of residency positions available.

Now that the 151,000 square-foot, state-of-the art building has allowed administrators to enlarge the number of students admitted, they believe the much-needed rise in the ranks of medical doctors will follow. “We’re working hard to grow the physician workforce in Mississippi,” Woodward said.

That work is vital for improving patient access to health care.

“There will continue to be a need for more providers because the population is aging and people are living longer,” Jackson-Williams said. “We have seen major advancements in the management of injuries and chronic disease.

“We need those providers to help patients navigate an increasingly complex health-care system.”


That is particularly true for Mississippi, which is in last place at about 186 active physicians per 100,000 residents, as recorded by the 2017 State Physician Workforce Data Report from the Association of American Medical Colleges.

The report says active physicians number under 5,600 in a state with a population of nearly three million. The good news is that Mississippi ranks sixth in retaining physicians who receive their medical education here.

Economic development estimates predict the larger class sizes will swell state tax revenue by more than $240 million, create another 19,000-plus jobs and produce an additional $1.7 billion impact after 2025.

Members of the School of Medicine’s admissions committee accept only Mississippi residents, who are more likely to be aware of the state’s health care needs and, it’s hoped, remain here after graduation.

The Class of 2022 is “100 percent Mississippi residents,” Manuel said. Nearly 40 percent come from rural areas, while 96 percent are from underserved counties. They represent 22 different majors; nearly one-third majored in biology or biological sciences.

It was in 2005 that the School of Medicine began increasing admissions by increments once again, starting with 100 students. From 1974 until 1982, the school had accepted 150, but the class size started declining afterward.

For now, the number of admissions for the first-year class will remain at 165, Woodward said.

Kingfish note: Now if they would just bring back the old Murmur. 

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

That's good news. It also shows the great potential return on any investment of state educational funding in the biological and technical fields of study at the secondary and collegiate level. Obviously the investment of state funds will be in accordance with the status quo of Mississippi higher education so that Ole Miss and State retain their relative positions, but it still represents positive results.

Anonymous said...

No reason we can't produce some of the highest skilled physicians in the world.

Excellent news !!

Anonymous said...

William Carey recently graduated its first class of physicians. UMC now understands there is more than one show in town. Good business to enlarge the class.

MD vs DO? is there a real difference?

Anonymous said...

this is overdue by about 25 years.

they manipulated the number of doctors to keep salaries inflated.

the interesting thing is now these new doctors will not be able to stay in MS because after the ACA is repealed no one will be able to afford insurance anyway.

so...way to go.....25 years late, historic student loan debt levels, and no real ability to repay any of it.

Anonymous said...

Is the slogan now "Go to med school instead of law school?"

Anonymous said...

Sorry, 11:57AM, but it is highly unlikely that UMMC manipulated premed positions to keep salaries inflated. Are you talking about just MS doctors' salaries or is UMMC guilty of some silent, national collusion? Sounds like you're probably going to vote for McDaniels regardless because of an intrinsic inability to synthesize raw information efficiently.

Also, it's not like this glut of newly-minted doctors are going to be suddenly gobbled up by the other states because of the presence or absence of the ACA.

Now, as to your last sentence (fragment): It is fair to worry about the debt that these young doctors will incur because reimbursement rates are not going to magically rise anytime soon. I would imagine that in the not-too-distant future, unless you are sub-(sub?-) specialized, then becoming fantastically wealthy is going to become increasingly unlikely.

Anonymous said...

11:57 - so is it to be our concern about these individuals making the choice - on their own - to attend medical school? And in doing so, deciding - on their own again - how to pay for it (student loans, or otherwise)?

Granted, you certainly sound like one of the disgruntled groups that feel individuals that have previously incurred student loan debt and then found that they made bad decisions, either with their Liberal Arts degree, their further desire to go to law school when they couldn't find a job, or their social engineering subject categories that didn't provide them any reason for employment - that the rest of the country should absolve them of their responsibility to pay the borrowed funds back?

Frankly, if these new students choose to enter the profession, at whatever level, I wish them well. Just like I do any of your Liberal Arts graduates, or the graduates of the Auto Mechanics classes at Hinds. And if they are good at it I'm not worried about their paying off any debt they incur in the process. If these medical students are smart enough to make it through their UMMC classes, I'm sure they are smart enough to figure out the economics of borrowing (govt subsidized) money.

Anonymous said...

Increasing the number of first year medical students does not necessarily translate into more physicians in MS. In order to practice medicine the newly minted physician must have at least one year in an accredited residency program. Mississippi has fewer first year residency positions than medical school graduates each year. William Carey graduates are also eligible to apply to UMMC residency programs, further compounding the residency shortage. William Carey does not have it's own residency programs. Medical schools all across the nation have expanded class size and the growth in residency programs has been far less. If one is interested in primary care medicine or psychiatry (3 years post-medical school for internal medicine, family practice, pediatrics and 4 years for psychiatry), then the physician must compete directly with Nurse Practioners. And, as far as that new medical school with all the state of the are equipment, it should stay pristine since attendance in class is not required the first two years in medical school. The students stay at home on their computer cramming for step one of the medical boards (taken after the first two years) that are the primary criterion for a residency position. Given the above, who can blame them. Predictions are that the number of unmatched medical students will increase each year for the foreseeable future. This will become a large pool with excessive debt that although much better trained cannot even practice at the level of a nurse practioner. Perhaps as one UMMC official has said, "they can work in the pharmaceutical industry".

Anonymous said...

When the med schools welcome in more students it's great for the state, but when the law schools do it it's the worst thing that's ever happened.

Mark my words, when this class graduates and a few of them don't pass their medical exams, people will be decrying the falling standards of admissions in Mississippi's medical schools.

Anonymous said...

2:40 PM

You clearly have no idea how medical school admissions worked for the last 30 years.

Doctors controlled the number of doctors who would come out of UMC in various programs. Few doctors moved to MS from other states so the number of MS doctors was limited by UMC. You keep writing fluffy paragraphs but that will not make up for you lack of knowledge.


The reference to the ACA is based on fact as well. Phil did not expand Medicaid thus leaving fewer avenues of reimbursement for lots of MS doctors. No money then no pay. If no pay then doctor cannot pay his bills...including his student loans. This is not hard.

Keep trying to sound smart....it might work one day....but not today.


Anonymous said...

I doubt this will translate to many more physicians in the state, but it is good news for the university. No reason why the graduates would want to stay in state when they can move to more desirable locations that pay better.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, 4:27PM, you're just shiveringly wrong. As a physician who graduated from UMMC and have kept a close eye on its practices (both health-care and, ahem, business), it is inconceivable that UMMC's admission policies have done anything to influence physician migration into or out of this state. Doctors move into Mississippi for a) fulfillment of work visa requirements (i.e. serving in under-represented parts of the state), b) to enter a relatively lucrative practice that our own residency graduates would rather not for whatever reason or c) enter academic medicine, usually at an introductory level. Attracting doctors (or businesses or whatever) into Mississippi is extraordinarily difficult because of the predominantly low socioeconomics and relative under-education of a significant percentage of our population. You ascribe superhero powers to the ivory tower admissions people at UMC that are simply unwarranted.

What our Governor did in not expanding Medicaid was to prevent a massive financial outlay that would have come upon our taxpayers over time. Take a look at the states that did expand Medicaid and see what kind of financial shortfalls they experienced. In your utopia, yeah, it would be nice to have everyone insured and perhaps you would rather our federal and state tax requirements increase by 10-15% across the board to fund "healthcare for everyone?" Hospitals and physicians are not experiencing unprecedented growth based off of the ACA's insurance companies. Quite the opposite in fact. Many hospitals throughout the state are hanging on by threads, waiting to be rescued by mega groups such as Baptist out of Memphis, Ochsner out of New Orleans and, yes, UMMC. Soon, individual solo/group practices are going to be gobbled up in order to streamline what meager revenue is coming.

Go back and read 3:57PM's comments. They are dead-on regarding the glut of doctors onto a fairly fixed number of residency positions that is controlled by our FEDERAL government, not by UMMC or any other individual medical school.

Anonymous said...

Its fairly easy to get MS residency status for UMMC, so 100% instate doesnt mean what everyone thinks it means...it just means someone in the admin decided the applicant qualified as a resident...even if for some reason they wanted to check, it is just a 2 page form, that is looked at by a person...who checks the checkers...$$$$ can buy a lot more in MS

Below is the key..."When Requested"...who decides when to request?...Who reviews?

Residency classification
The Office of Student Records and Registrar is responsible for determining whether an applicant meets the requirements for being a legal resident of Mississippi for the purpose of enrollment, based on Admissions Standards and Legal Policy. When requested, applicants must complete a Request for Review of Residency Classification form and provide copies of a driver's license, car registration, car tag, voter registration card, proof of in-state banking and proof of a permanent in-state domicile.

Correcting Doogie Howzer.. said...

For 2:40 p.m. on September 19 - Since you so artfully critiqued the sentence structure of another poster by telling him he had typed a fragmented sentence, please allow me to correct your improper subject-verb agreement in the following sentence construction from your post:

"Also, it's not like this glut of newly-minted doctors are going to be suddenly gobbled up by the other states because of the presence or absence of the ACA."

You probably meant 'glut is' instead of 'glut are'.

Anonymous said...

The world's first heart transplant occurred at this facility. The recipient is a current Jackson City Councilman.

Dares To Question The Elitist.. said...

6:20 p.m.: Assuming your a/b/c lesson is accurate, please explain to me which category all the physicians I see in the Madison medical complexes fit into.

None of them appears to be in a work-visa or immigrant status. I can't think of any of them who is serving in a neglected area of the state (in Madison), and all of them have been in practice for years, thus not qualifying for your category of existing in an 'introductory capacity'.

And the same seems to apply to a hundred or more who work in the Flowood area who are perfectly happy living either in Madison County or Rankin County.

I think you need to turn your surgical cap around and realize that all these fine local doctors are not named Patel, Somaddsorender or Ahmaddensunde.

Anonymous said...

We need more nurses not doctors.

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