NJMS Offers Accelerated Three Year MD Primary Care Program

To address the shortage of primary-care physicians in New Jersey as well as around the country, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School has created an accelerated program that allows students to earn MD degrees in this field in three years instead of four.
“We hope the program helps ease the situation and even encourages students to stay in the state of New Jersey to practice,” says Dr. Christin Traba, the school’s assistant dean of clerkship education. “It will save the students time and potentially money because they will not have to pay tuition for a fourth year.”

The program, which will begin in the summer of 2019 with up to five students, also offers conditional acceptance into Rutgers-sponsored residency programs in internal medicine, combined internal medicine/pediatrics and pediatrics.

“Students are required to choose areas of study in one of these fields before they enter the program,” Traba says. “And it gives them the opportunity to establish a professional relationship with the Graduate Medical Education faculty in their selected residency program.”

The three-year program begins with early clinical immersion and completion of an EMT certification. Students provide continuity of care to patients one afternoon per week over the course of the program and earn a population health certificate in conjunction with the Rutgers School of Public Health.

Although three-year MD programs are increasingly becoming more common at U.S. medical schools such as those at New York University and the University of California, Davis, this is a first for Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, which has about 180 students in each graduating class.

“Our ultimate goal is to create leaders in primary care and community health to help bridge the gap in health disparities for vulnerable populations as well as to provide role models to stimulate interest in primary care,” says Traba.
For more information about the three year primary care program, please contact Christin Traba, Assistant Dean for Clerkship Education, at morancm@njms.rutgers.edu.