A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
|A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona|
|Provost||Craig M. Phelps, D.O., FAOASM|
|Dean||Kay Kalousek, DO|
|Academic staff||176 full-time
|Location||Mesa, Arizona, USA|
The A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (SOMA) is an osteopathic medical school in the United States granting the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree. SOMA was established in 2007, and is one of the schools located at the Mesa, Arizona campus of the larger A.T. Still University, which operates a main campus in Kirksville, Missouri.
The school accepts approximately 100 new students each year. The first class of 92 students graduated in June 2011. SOMA is accredited by the Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA) of the American Osteopathic Association (AOA).
To serve "as a learning-centered university dedicated to preparing highly competent professionals through innovative academic programs with a commitment to continue its osteopathic heritage and its focus on whole person healthcare, scholarship, community health, interprofessional education, diversity, and underserved populations."
The campus operates in a portion of a 100,000-square-foot (9,300 m2) building on the 22 acres (89,000 m2) campus of A.T. Still University in Mesa. The campus is the anchor of the Arizona Health & Technology Park, a 132-acre (0.53 km2) education, healthcare, and technology triangle owned by ATSU and Vanguard Health Systems. The master plan for the new park includes hospitals, long-term care facilities, professional offices, and product development research facilities.
SOMA uses the Clinical Presentation Educational Model which teaches that there are about 120 different ways that a patient can present themself to a physician. The teaching method was based on a method developed in 1994 by the University of Calgary. Basic sciences are coupled with clinical sciences so that the students have a more comprehensive and practical foundation for each medical discipline. The curriculum design emphasizes clinical competencies. which allows students to enter residency programs with greater experience with chronic disease than students educated in the majority of tertiary care-oriented academic health centers.
SOMA is unique in that the first year is spent at the Mesa campus and the last three years at one of many community clinics. As of 2012 SOMA offers 11 community clinic opportunities in such locations as:
- Unity Healthcare - Washington, DC
- Beaufort-Jasper-Hampton Comprehensive Health Services – Ridgeland, SC
- Health Point (previously Community Health Centers of King County) – Seattle, WA
- El Rio Community Health Center – Tucson, AZ
- Family Healthcare Network – Porterville, CA
- HealthSource of Ohio – Milford, OH
- Northcountry/Canyonlands Community Health Center – Flagstaff, AZ
- Northwest Regional Healthcare – Portland, OR
- Adelante Healthcare – Phoenix, AZ
- Sunset Park Family Health Center – Brooklyn, NY
- Wai‘anae Coast Comprehensive Health Center – Wai‘anae, HI
SOMA was started in response to a request from, and in partnership with, the nation’s healthcare safety net of community health centers. The purpose of hometown endorsement is to help the medical school meet the needs of community health centers by attracting and training dedicated, motivated, and qualified community-minded physicians.
Hometown applicants are those who have:
- Located a community health center (CHC) to stay involved with
- Developed relationships with CHC staff and leadership
- Learned about the working environment of a CHC
- Gained valuable volunteer or work experience
- Gained SOMA application endorsement from a CHC leader
A hometown endorsement lets the medical school know which applicants community health centers believe could become the compassionate community-minded healers they would like to employ. Prospective students interested in seeking a hometown endorsement are encouraged to seek and identify a community health center to connect with as a volunteer or employee. In this way, the student can learn about that health center’s approach for improving community health, develop health center relationships, and (hopefully) gain the endorsement from that CHC. A community health center leader can advocate an applicant's acceptance into the medical school by sending a hometown endorsement letter. Hometown letters of endorsement do not replace the regular application process. Hometown endorsement letters parallel the regular application process – a process that requires its own letters of support.
- "Kalousek appointed dean of ATSU-SOMA". Heartland Connection. March 27, 2012. Retrieved May 12, 2012.
- "Academic Fast Facts - School of Osteopathic Medicine - A.T. Still University". Atsu.edu. Retrieved 2012-05-26.
- "A.T. Still University–School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (ATSU-SOMA)". American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine.
- Thomason, Art (4 June 2011). "A.T. Still in Mesa lauds its 1st medical graduates". The Arizona Republic.
- Thomason, Art (June 3, 2011). "A.T. Still medical school has first graduation today". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "ATSU-SOMA receives full accreditation status". ATSU News Releases. 1 June 2011.
- "SOMA School Catalog" (PDF). Retrieved 1 May 2012.
- "Entries tagged with “Arizona Health & Technology Park” » » News Releases – A.T. Still University". News.atsu.edu. Retrieved 2012-05-26.
- Chen, Candace; Mullan, Fitzhugh (June 2009). "The separate osteopathic medical education pathway: uniquely addressing national needs. Point.". Academic medicine : journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges 84 (6): 695. doi:10.1097/ACM.0b013e3181a3dd28. PMID 19474535. Retrieved 3 November 2012.
- "Faculty Interview: ATSU-School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona". The Student Doctor Network. 10 November 2008.
- "Student D.O. Day at ATSU-SOMA Flyer" (PDF).
- Handout, SOMA, October 2010
- "Hometown Partnerships for Health". ATSU SOMA Admissions. Retrieved 1 May 2012.
- "Kalousek appointed dean of ATSU-SOMA » News Releases – A.T. Still University". News.atsu.edu. Retrieved 2013-01-25.