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A major grant empowers IU School of Medicine to tackle health disparities.

Closing the Gap

a student talks with a patient at the student outreach clinic in indianapolis
In 2020, IU School of Medicine received a $7 million grant from the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) to help the school educate medical students to better care for underserved populations. As the state and nation continue to deal with the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as addressing racial inequities captivating the national consciousness, this grant is aimed at helping IU School of Medicine lead the way in eliminating health care deficits.

The grant will fund a project called Primary Care Reaffirmation for Indiana Medical Education (PRIME). Its goal is to provide doctors with the tools needed to offer better care to medically underserved and vulnerable communities, both in primary and specialty care.

PRIME will enhance the IU School of Medicine curriculum by focusing on social determinants of health, primary care skills and health systems science. The curriculum will incorporate telehealth, ultrasound, student-driven community improvement projects and scholarly concentrations. Experiential training opportunities also will be expanded throughout the state, particularly in underserved Indiana communities. This project reaches beyond medical school and will be coupled with primary care residency expansion around the state.

The HRSA grant will award $1.75 million annually for four years with a goal of giving medical students at IU School of Medicine deeper curricular and experiential exposure for providing primary care to underserved areas and populations across the state. This will be accomplished in partnership with the school’s large number of clinical partners—affiliations with 120 hospitals, clinics, practice groups and health care organizations—to assist with educational placements. Clinical partners include 26 critical access hospitals and 13 federally qualified health centers statewide.

Additionally, IU School of Medicine will strengthen undergraduate recruitment efforts focused on vulnerable populations. This includes promotion of a pipeline program in medical science designed to prepare underrepresented minority students for medical school.

Read more stories from the 2020 Annual Report.

Annual Report

The views expressed in this content represent the perspective and opinions of the author and may or may not represent the position of Indiana University School of Medicine.
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IU School of Medicine

With more than 60 academic departments and specialty divisions across nine campuses and strong clinical partnerships with Indiana’s most advanced hospitals and physician networks, Indiana University School of Medicine is continuously advancing its mission to prepare healers and transform health in Indiana and throughout the world.