The School of Medicine at the University of California, Riverside has been granted provisional accreditation by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME), the accrediting body for educational programs leading to the M.D. degree in the U.S. and Canada.
Provisional accreditation is the second of three steps that all new M.D.-granting medical schools must complete, culminating in full accreditation. The UCR medical school was granted preliminary accreditation by the LCME in October 2012, which permitted it to recruit and enroll its first class of 50 students in August 2013. This coming August, the UCR medical school will enroll its third class of medical students.
“This is tremendous news, not only for the School of Medicine and UCR, but for the entire Inland Southern California community which is served by this medical school,” said UCR Chancellor Kim A. Wilcox. “It is a credit to hard work of both the leadership of the School and the community that we have reached this milestone.”
“Achieving provisional accreditation is a major objective for the UCR School of Medicine,” said G. Richard Olds, UCR vice chancellor for health affairs and dean of the medical school. “Meeting the rigorous educational and infrastructure standards of the LCME demonstrates that this medical school has built a strong foundation for expanding and diversifying the physician workforce in Inland Southern California and improving the health of people living here.”
A survey team appointed by the LCME conducted a site visit of the UCR medical school in February, and the school was notified of the LCME decision this month.
The UCR School of Medicine, one of more than 15 new medical schools established in the U.S. over the last decade, is the sixth medical school in the University of California system. Establishment of the UCR School of Medicine was approved by the University of California Board of Regents in July 2008 and Olds, the founding dean, was appointed in February 2010.
The foundation of the UCR School of Medicine is the UCR/UCLA Thomas Haider Program in Biomedical Sciences, which for more than 30 years has partnered with the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA to train physicians. The UCR medical school maintains the tradition of the former two-year program at UCR, with about half of the seats each year designated for UCR undergraduate degree holders through the Thomas Haider Program at the UCR School of Medicine.
“Achieving this second important step in the accreditation process is a testament to the dedication of the faculty and staff of the medical school in creating an optimal learning environment for our medical students,” said Paul Lyons, the school’s senior associate dean for education. LCME evaluation of the medical school for full accreditation status will be expected in 2017, the same year the UCR medical school will graduate its first class of medical students.
The medical school also offers a Ph.D. program in biomedical sciences, a long-standing graduate degree program at UCR. The school additionally operates five residency training programs in the medical specialties of family medicine, internal medicine, general surgery and psychiatry, and partners with Loma Linda University in a primary care pediatrics residency training program.
Accreditation is one of the top priorities when students are choosing a school to attend. UCR School of Medicine provisional accreditation makes not only the school of location of choice for students, but the entire city.