Meritus Health to open medical school

Hagerstown, Md.-based Meritus Health will move forward with plans to open a four-year medical school in the city. 

The decision was inspired by the hospital's shortage of over 50 physicians, according to a July 12 press release shared with Becker's

"The needs for our community, and communities like us throughout Maryland and the United States, centers on having access to great physicians," Meritus President and CEO Maulik Joshi, DrPH, said. "That is the foundation and a huge need in Washington County. The proposed Meritus School of Osteopathic Medicine gives us the opportunity to train physicians in an environment like ours; focused on the health of the community. Physicians who train in our community will be more likely to practice in our community."

The school will be on Meritus Medical Center's campus. It will be 200,000 square feet in size with student housing adjacent to the campus. 

Dr. Joshi said independent impact analysis predicts the school will contribute over $100 million a year in economic benefit for the Hagerstown community and the state of Maryland. 

Meritus Health has named Paula Gregory, DO, as the inaugural dean of the school. Dr. Gregory previously served as an assistant dean and chair of clinical education at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine-Georgia campus. 

The school plans to open in the fall of 2025. 

Meritus Health is Western Maryland's largest healthcare provider, serving over 200,000 residents. 

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