Kaiser Permanente to open medical school in Southern California

Oakland, Calif.-based Kaiser Permanente plans to open a medical school in Southern California, according to the Los Angeles Times.

"We have the opportunity to help train future physicians on 21st century medicine and be on the cutting edge of all the changes we are experiencing," said Kaiser CEO Bernard Tyson, according to the report. "Our model of care is best for the current and future diverse populations in this country."

Kaiser's reasoning behind the decision is partially based on diversity and its desire to recruit more minority students.

Currently, 600 physicians are completing their residency programs at the nonprofit health system. Edward Ellison, MD, executive medical director of Southern California Permanente Medical Group, said Kaiser's move has been met with encouragement from medical school leaders. "We are all in it together on how to prepare physicians for the future," Dr. Ellison said, according to the report.

Mr. Tyson said although he investigated the idea of partnering with other universities for Kaiser's medical school, he ultimately decided to start from scratch, according to the report. Kaiser has yet to settle on a final location for the Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine.

Kaiser — whose annual revenue last year was $56.4 billion — is slowly releasing other details about the planned medical school. It will open in the fall of 2019 with an inaugural class of 50 students.

Although Kaiser said tuition will be competitive with other medical schools and financial aid opportunities will help "disadvantaged students," the health system has not released details on how much the school will cost, according to the report.

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