UNC School of Medicine Asheville
Information about Longitudinal Integrated Curriculum
- UNC School of Medicine Asheville campus opened in July 2009 with the support of UNC School of Medicine, Mission Health, and Mountain AHEC. Beginning with four students, we expanded to 20 students in 2014, which complete their third year training in Asheville.
- The foundation of this program, a longitudinal integrated curriculum, is similar to the “Cambridge Model.” In 2004, Harvard restructured their third year clerkships to place a cohort of students in outpatient settings for the majority of their curriculum, which allowed students to follow “their patients” in all health care settings. (Reference: Ogur B, et al. The Harvard Medical School-Cambridge Integrated Clerkship: An Innovative Model of Clinical Education. Acad Med. 2007; 82:397-404.)
- Longitudinal integrated clerkships (LICs) have the following core principles:
Continuity of Ps:
- Authentic roles with patients
- Flexibility of unscheduled half days for self directed learning,
The Asheville community, with its robust primary care services and diverse specialty practice settings, provides an ideal setting for this type of curriculum. (Reference: Latessa R, Beaty N, Royal K, Colvin G, Pathman D, Heck J. Academic Outcomes of a Community Based Longitudinal Integrated Clerkships Program. 2014; 22 pages. (Accepted Medical Teacher January 2015).
- The longitudinal integrated curriculum utilizes a cadre of dedicated teachers and a greater reliance on outpatient teaching. Students have more exposure to experienced practicing physicians and a much greater likelihood of seeing the same patients over an extended period of time and through the continuum of care.
- The fourth year reverts to block schedules and presents opportunities for rotations in rural WNC, as well as Chapel Hill or across the state, nation, or internationally.
What students say about the program:
Greetings all! I'm Addie, a third year medical student in the Asheville longitudinal program. I learned about the program in my first year orientation, and was immediately attracted to the idea of working in western NC. Not only did the longitudinal curriculum appeal to me, but the chance to live in a new community was an exciting one. This year, I have been struck by the close relationships I have with my preceptors, many of whom also double as career and personal mentors. The opportunity to follow patients through the year is a strength that can't be emphasized enough; there is nothing like tracking a newborn through her first year of development!
My medical interests broadly include women's health, obstetrics, family planning, and mental health. I have been interested in women's health since college, where I fell in love with learning about gender and sexuality. Later, working as a doula, I cemented that interest from a health perspective. In medical school, and now in clerkships, I enjoy incorporating medical knowledge into taking care of, not just the entire woman, but their families, too.
When I'm not in clinic or the hospital, I enjoy driving the parkway for the heck of it, watching Carolina basketball at my neighborhood joint, or scheming new brunch spots. I couldn't be happier to call Asheville home.