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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Why is this degree necessary?

The physician to patient shortage, especially in primary care is real.  Despite aggressive efforts to increase medical school enrollments, the physician to patient ratio continues to decline nationally, with the greatest deficits found in primary care.  Physician Assistants have graduate training in the medical model and extensive clinical experience. Without the redundancy of traditional medical school, this new training provides the already highly skilled physician assistant with additional knowledge, skills and competencies to further meet the growing healthcare demand in just two years and without using ACGME dollars.  

  1. Is this a Physician Assistant program?

No.  While this Doctoral training is designed for and targets physician assistants, this program is in no way affiliated with a physician assistant program.  Rather, the LMU-DCOM medical school has designed and implemented this training specifically for experienced physician assistants.  The medical school was very careful to adhere to each of the recommendations of the 2009 PA summit meeting.

  1. Is this a shortcut to becoming a doctor?

No.  This is not a shortcut to becoming a doctor.  In fact, upon completion, the Doctor of Medical Science graduate will have no less than seven years of post-bachelor’s degree training and clinical experience.  Rather, this is a means of training an alternate doctoral level clinician to help meet the demands of the U.S. healthcare needs.

  1. Will there be additional clinical tracks in the future?

 LMU-DCOM is constantly studying the health care needs of Appalachia and other underserved regions.  Once the Doctor of Medical Science program, with its current primary care focus, is deemed successful by the University, the health care profession, and patients then the demand for doctoral trained physician assistants in other areas of highest medical need will be investigated.

  1. Why an education track?

 With the rapid expansion of medical training programs, the demand for medical educators continues to increase.  DMS graduates from the Education track will have advanced medical knowledge as well as educational training for effective delivery of medical academia.

  1. Why is your program not offered in my state?

The Doctor of Medical Science Curriculum is delivered predominantly by distance learning methods.  This requires strict adherence to Federal and State legislation.  Currently, LMU-DCOM can offer this program to students in the state of Tennessee, and to students residing in states that are either members of the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) through the Electronic Campus Regional Reciprocity Agreement (SECRRA), or the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA).   Additional states will be pursued as need and demand dictates.

  1. What is the cost?

Tuition for the entire program is $48,000.  See the Tuition / Financial Aid section for more details.

  1. Is the program accredited?

 As a member of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, the Doctor of Medical Science degree program has been reviewed by the Commission’s Board of Trustees who issued the following statement:

                The Board of Trustees of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                Commission on Colleges reviewed the materials seeking approval of the Doctor

                Of Medical Science degree program.  It was the decision of the Board to approve

                the program and include it in the scope of the current accreditation.  Nov 11, 2015.

There are currently no other regulatory bodies to accredit this new program.

  1. When will the application process begin?

The online electronic application will open February 1, 2016.

  1. Where is the LMU-DCOM campus?

The medical school is located in Harrogate, TN. Harrogate is located approximately 1 hour north of Knoxville, TN.  The campus sits below the Cumberland Gap, bordering VA and KY.

Frequently Asked Questions

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423.869.3611 | 800.325.0900
6965 Cumberland Gap Parkway
Harrogate, TN 37752