5 minutes with: Dr. John Raymond

Dr. John Raymond

Last updated on June 18th, 2019 at 11:17 am

The Medical College of Wisconsin recently partnered with the Greater Milwaukee Foundation in its effort to establish a presence in Milwaukee’s central city and address persistent health disparities, with plans to co-locate in a new center. Meanwhile, at its Wauwatosa campus, MCW continues to evaluate new program options, including a master’s in genetic counseling and a physician assistant program, as well as possible future campuses in the state.

In a recent interview with BizTimes reporter Lauren Anderson, MCW president and CEO John Raymond discussed the plans.

Partnering with GMF in the central city

“The Greater Milwaukee Foundation is going to bring expertise that MCW simply can’t bring in terms of place-based investment and racial equity, which are very important for the things we want to accomplish in terms of dealing with the social determinants of health. So it’s almost a dream partnership for MCW.”

“There is an enormous talent base in Milwaukee that wants to be part of the solution for health disparities and racial inequity and economic inequity, but largely we haven’t worked well together. Both Greater Milwaukee Foundation and MCW recognize that we bring some talent and some resources but the problem is a staggering problem and it’s going to require many different partners. We’re already engaged in fairly significant conversations with local municipalities about transportation, housing – some of the problems that will need to be dealt with if we’re truly going to empower under-resourced neighborhoods. We’re also talking to other not-for-profit organizations, as well as for-profit companies that are interested in trying to reinvest in Milwaukee.”

Building out programs

“There are very few freestanding medical schools in the country. Most medical schools are either a component of a comprehensive university or what we would call a ‘health sciences university,’ which has other health-related disciplines, like social work, dentistry, pharmacy, nursing, public health. So we’re simply expanding our programs so we can be like other successful health sciences universities.”

“The second part is we recognize that the physician workforce is only one small component of overall health care delivery and that MCW has an obligation to meet the workforce needs of our partners here in the region – the main partners of the VA, Children’s (Hospital of Wisconsin) and Froedtert – but also our partners across the state. And that will involve new programs.”

Possible new campuses

“We have a very unique exportable model of delivering education with community immersion, using community talent and resources in our curriculum. It’s a break-even model in terms of tuition revenue being able to support the education. That’s unusual. Most all MD-granting institutions have to subsidize the education of their students. Because we’re using digital technology and telecommunication, we’re able to export this model easily, plus or minus one time zone, anywhere where they speak English.”

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