Thomas Jefferson U launches first international dual-MD degree

Thomas Jefferson University inked an agreement with a university in Rome to create the first-ever dual medical degree program allowing physicians to practice in both the U.S. and the European Union, the Philadelphia-based university announced Nov. 12.

Here are three things to know:

1. Under the agreement, which officials signed Nov. 11, medical students at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart Rome in Italy would earn a bachelor's degree from Thomas Jefferson University and dual medical degrees from Thomas Jefferson University's Sidney Kimmel Medical College in Philadelphia and the Catholic University's School of Medicine and Surgery within six years.

2. Catholic University students who enroll in the dual degree program will also travel to Thomas Jefferson University to complete part of their training, as the requirements to practice medicine differ in both nations. In the U.S., students must obtain an undergraduate degree before enrolling in a four-year medical school, while in Europe, students matriculate into medical school from high school and complete all their requirements to practice medicine within six years.

3. Officials also signed a clinical research agreement on Nov. 11 that would allow for the creation of research opportunities in both countries.

"These students will experience two unique academic environments and will study, train and treat patients alongside their U.S. medical peers — giving both groups a broad understanding and appreciation for very distinct healthcare ecosystems," Stephen K. Klasko, MD, president of Thomas Jefferson University and CEO of Philadelphia-based Jefferson Health, said in a statement. "Healthcare is global. This dual degree helps us create the global physician of the future."

To learn more, click here.

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