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Campbell opens new medical school to students

Posted August 5, 2013

— Campbell University is opening the first new medical school in the state for decades.

The university welcomed 162 students to its school of osteopathic medicine on Monday. Its mission is to prepare students to serve as primary care doctors in underserved and rural areas. 

"Our focus is training primary care doctors, people who have a heart for primary care medicine," said Dr. John Kauffman, the school's dean.

Nearby residents in Harnett County said the need for doctors in rural areas is very real.

"We're not rich. We're poor," said Raven Bullard. "My mama has to scrape up money to go all the way to Chapel Hill to take my little sister to the doctor."

Demand for primary care physicians is expected to increase sharply as people age, the state's population grows and health insurance laws change.

"If we don't start training more doctors, we're going to be in trouble," Kauffman said. 

Campbell med school aiming to fill rural healthcare gap Campbell med school aiming to fill rural healthcare gap

"Everybody doesn't have money to travel to get to good doctors," Bullard said. "We need good doctors everywhere, so everyone can get the same amount of healthcare."

The school will be the second largest in the state behind the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It will be the only school training osteopathic doctors, who emphasize wellness and disease prevention alongside traditional methods.

Student John Bunyasaranand said the program is an opportunity he couldn't pass up.

"By trade, I'm a special forces medic. I was stationed at Bragg. I really like the area and I really like rural care," he said. "Everything is brand new, state-of-the-art, and I didn't have to borrow any money. They had plenty of cash on hand, and the community threw in millions to help get it going." 

North Carolina's other three medical schools are at Duke University, Wake Forest University and East Carolina University.

18 Comments

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  • ncrph08 Aug 6, 12:18 p.m.

    I'm not saying they aren't educated nor am I saying they won't be good care providers. Nor am I spreading misinformation. The fact is they are NOT medical doctors. a doodle doo

    Except they will be medical doctors. It's not like they'll be PhDs that can't diagnose and treat medical problems. They will be able to do all the things a MD can do so it doesn't really matter what the initals are behind the name.

    I think it is wonderful that they are trying to expand. Campbell University is becoming a leader in training many medical professionals! Go Campbell Camels where everyday is "hump day"!

  • dldobbins Aug 6, 11:17 a.m.

    Campbell University is a great school. The professors there are of the highest caliber and take extra time to teach you if you want to learn and/or need a little help. I have faith that Campbell will put out some of the best doctors in the country.

  • Cock a doodle doo Aug 5, 6:57 p.m.

    I'm not saying they aren't educated nor am I saying they won't be good care providers. Nor am I spreading misinformation. The fact is they are NOT medical doctors.

  • RandolphBloke Aug 5, 6:33 p.m.

    "The story should make a point to tell readers that these graduates will NOT be medical doctors." - cadd

    Actually that is untrue. They are licensed and regulated by the AMA and held to the same standards. They are accepted as equal medical professionals in other countries, etc. So please don't spread misinformation.

    They approach things differently for sure. But you must realize they go through the same amounts of training, they are regulated by the same boards and associations, etc. They are no more nor no less capable as MDs. An osteopathic doctor (DO) is as good a choice for your primary physician as is an allopathic doctor (MD.)

  • clrjweeks Aug 5, 6:25 p.m.

    The last line should probably say North Carolina's other four medical schools are at the University of North Carolina, Duke University, Wake Forest University and East Carolina University.

  • Cock a doodle doo Aug 5, 5:30 p.m.

    The story should make a point to tell readers that these graduates will NOT be medical doctors.

  • zenonx6 Aug 5, 4:31 p.m.

    Yeah,, I though this was a religious school. Some one I know goes there and comes out an agnostic big bang believer and snubs religion.

  • pediatrician Aug 5, 3:59 p.m.

    Traditional school emphasize prevention as well. Osteopathic schools compared to traditional med schools, which are called Allopathic, are typically considered 2nd tier medical schools. They do compete with MD's for residency spots, but typically DO's are not always thought to be as competitive as applicants that are MD's.

  • btneast Aug 5, 3:43 p.m.

    and relative to public schools, Campbell was expensive 30 years ago.

    Yeah, that's what I thought too. It has never been a bargain priced school.

  • claytontarheel Aug 5, 3:25 p.m.

    "Campbell is hardly affordable these days...sat22dude"

    Nothing affordable about any university education, and relative to public schools, Campbell was expensive 30 years ago.

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