*Xavier University in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland — both Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) — plan to introduce two more medical schools in the U.S.
Xavier which is a Black Catholic university plans to double up its legacy of sending the most Black students to medical school to help create the most Black doctors. The university is already known for having a top-tier pre-med program that sent the most Black students to medical school. The university announced plans for its medical school in April 2022 to help the healthcare industry meet its demand for more doctors.
“It’s important that we not only address the physician shortage but that we address the diversity of the physician population,” Xavier President Reynold Verret said. “As we learned throughout the pandemic – but we knew beforehand – trust and representation are linked. Trust is an important part of public health and also in addressing health disparities.”
Xavier plans to launch its program in 2025.
For Morgan State University in Baltimore, it is essential that Baltimore residents are treated by doctors who look like them, so they can relate easily. Morgan State was to open its medical school in September last year.
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The Baltimore Banner reported that the proposed Maryland College of Osteopathic Medicine will have two top goals: “increase the number of Black doctors entering the profession and, in turn, increase Black Baltimore residents’ access to physicians that look like them.” The report quoted the founders.
“Many members of this community go to the emergency room for treatment, and they’re often treated by people who don’t understand the dynamics of how they grew up and what they’re going through,” said John Sealey, the founding dean of Morgan State’s upcoming medical school. “We want to change that.”
Morgan State hopes to enroll 125 students in their medical school in Fall 2024.
HBCU medical schools provide a better environment for Black students’ sense of validation and self-esteem, according to a study published in July 2022.
“Our findings suggest that Black medical students in PWI schools may experience greater everyday discrimination relative to their HBCU peers that leads to reduced perceptions of their ability to succeed within medical school,” Dr. Sylvia Perry, the study’s senior researcher and an associate professor of psychology at Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences at Northwestern University, explained.
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