OU School of Community Medicine

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OU School of Community Medicine
Motto Educate and train a new generation of practitioners with the skills and desire to improve the health status of all Oklahomans.
Type Public
Established 1974
Dean James Herman, MD
Postgraduates 110
Location Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
Campus Suburban
Website tulsa.ou.edu/socm

The OU School of Community Medicine (OUSCM) located in Tulsa, OK is a branch of the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine. It is the first medical school of its kind in the nation. The OU School of Community Medicine is designed to serve the healthcare needs of entire communities, especially vulnerable and underserved populations.[1] OUSCM is guided by the growing need for more physicians focused on serving vulnerable populations, the growing number of people without access to quality health care, and the relatively poor health status of Oklahomans.[2]


The University of Oklahoma College of Medicine was founded in 1900 and is located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. In 1974, the OU College of Medicine opened a geographically separate, community-based clinical campus in Tulsa, approximately 100 miles northeast of the main campus. At the Tulsa campus, known as the OU Tulsa Schusterman Center, programs are affiliated with three community hospitals: Hillcrest Medical Center, Saint Francis Hospital, and St. John Medical Center.

In 2008 a $50 million transformational gift from the George Kaiser Family Foundation allowed the OU College of Medicine Tulsa to change its focus.[3] The gift established the OU School of Community Medicine with the goal of improving public health in Oklahoma, where citizens face critical challenges in access to quality healthcare. The school is seeking faculty and students from within Oklahoma and around the nation who have a specific interest in public health and community service. Students learn the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of acute and chronic diseases in whole communities, as well as the full range of primary care and sub-specialties offered in traditional medical programs.

On December 1, 2009, OU president David Boren and University of Tulsa president Steadman Upham jointly announced that the two universities would collaborate to create a four-year medical school in Tulsa.[4] In 2012 it was announced that the Oxley Foundation would donate $30 million toward the development of the OU/TU medical school.[5] The expanded four-year program accepted its first students in the fall of 2015.[6] Part of this expansion includes the construction of a new state-of-the-art medical simulation training facility named the Tandy Education Center. The construction of this 16,000 square foot facility was made possible by a donation from the A.R. and Marylouise Tandy Foundation.[7]

OUSCM Summer Institute[edit]

The OUSCM Summer Institute is an innovative, experiential examination of health care delivery in Tulsa held annually in late summer.[8] Participants in the institute – one of only two of its kind in the country – include first and second- year University of Oklahoma medical students, physician assistant students, students from the OU Colleges of Social Work, Pharmacy and Nursing, and faculty members. The institute allows participants to take an in-depth look at community medicine from a range of perspectives and develop solutions to problems they identify during the week’s experience.[9]

Some students and faculty who attended past Summer Institutes have called the experience life-changing on many levels, but particularly in deepening their understanding of the needs of the medically vulnerable and the goals of making entire communities healthier.

OU Tulsa Community Health (Bedlam Clinics)[edit]

Community Health,[10] nicknamed the Bedlam Clinics, is an innovative, collaborative program that has provided affordable healthcare to the indigent and underserved in Tulsa county since 2003.

When the first Bedlam (now known as Community Health) clinic opened, Tulsa faced a plunging economy with more than 25,000 jobs lost in just 18 months. Consequently, healthcare coverage was lost, and hospital emergency rooms became critically overtaxed. Seeing a community in need, the OU School of Community Medicine took a leadership role in facing this crisis and finding a solution.

In addition, the model provides an essential teaching component to OU medical, pharmacy, social work, and nursing students. Hands-on training strengthens clinical skills, overall curriculum, and cultural competency while instilling an appreciation for volunteerism and efficient clinic operation.


Students at the OU School of Community Medicine are given the opportunity to take advantage of Educational grants and forgiveness for service. OUSCM Students are also allowed to take graduate public health courses leading to an MPH or Public Health Certificate at no cost to the student. Students are recruited from all over the country - with an interest in public health and care for the underserved medical community. Applicants are admitted to OU College of Medicine and select the OU School of Community Medicine track.

OUSCM students are given the opportunity to take part in clinical experiences at both the Bedlam Evening and Bedlam Longitudinal clinics (Community Health Clinics), gaining experience working with the underserved and medically vulnerable. Students can also participate in clinical experiences at school based clinics in addition to clinical rotations in a multitude of practice areas.

Faculty and Resident Fellows[edit]

Over 150 OU School of Community Medicine faculty are housed in 10 residency programs and departments including: Family Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Pediatrics, Internal Medicine, Surgery, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Psychiatry, Internal Medicine/Pediatrics, Medical Informatics, and Rural Family Medicine. Clinical faculty are part of OU Physicians, an academic group practice that is part of the OU School of Community Medicine. OU Physicians enables its members to provide excellent patient service and care, enhance OU's community mission to teach tomorrow's physicians and develop innovative health care services.

Resident Fellows, Faculty, and Staff at the OU School of Community Medicine participate in Leadership Courses to enhance expertise in principles of community health and clinical teaching.[11]


  1. ^ Clancy, GP; Duffy, FP (December 2013). "Going "all in" to transform the Tulsa community's health and health care workforce.". Academic Medicine. 88 (12): 1844–1848. PMID 24128637. doi:10.1097/ACM.0000000000000039. 
  2. ^ OU School of Community Medicine [1] Homepage
  3. ^ "University of Oklahoma Receives $50 Million From George Kaiser Family Foundation". Philanthropy News Digest. February 2008. 
  4. ^ Kim Archer, "TU, OU team up for med school", Tulsa World, December 2, 2009.
  5. ^ Clark, Richard (June 2012). "Oxley Foundation's $30 Million Gift To Fund Tulsa School Of Community Medicine". News on 6. 
  6. ^ Allen, Silas (November 2013). "Tulsa School of Community Medicine hopes to accept first year medical students by 2015". The Oklahoman. 
  7. ^ Krehbiel, Randy (September 2014). "OU-TU School of Community Medicine breaks ground on new building.". Tulsa World. 
  8. ^ Duffy, FD; Miller-Cribbs, JE; Clancy, GP; Van De Wiele, CJ; Teague, TK; Crow, S; Kollaja, EA; Fox, MD (December 2014). "Changing the culture of a medical school by orienting students and faculty toward community medicine.". Academic Medicine. 89 (12): 1630–1635. PMID 25162616. doi:10.1097/ACM.0000000000000463. 
  9. ^ Miller-Cribbs, Julie; Crow, Sheila (2013). "Learning the Anatomy of a Community: An Interprofessional Initiative" (PDF). Medical Science Educator. 23 (3S): 430. 
  10. ^ Muchmore, Shannon (August 2013). "OU Bedlam Clinics celebrate 10 years of helping uninsured". Tulsa World. 
  11. ^ Wallace, EA; Miller-Cribbs, JE; Duffy, FD (March 2013). "An Experiential Community Orientation to Improve Knowledge and Assess Resident Attitudes Toward Poor Patients". Journal of Graduate Medical Education. 5 (1): 119–124. PMC 3613295Freely accessible. PMID 24404238. doi:10.4300/JGME-D-12-00015.1. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°06′07″N 95°55′28″W / 36.10194°N 95.92444°W / 36.10194; -95.92444