The University of South Florida has transformed a community medical school, established by the Florida Legislature in 1965, into a major academic medical center known statewide and nationally for its innovative curriculum with an emphasis on improving health through interprofessional education, research and clinical activities.
The USF College of Medicine, which enrolled its charter class in 1971, was named the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine in 2011, signifying its leading role in changing how medical schools teach physicians of the future. Fully accredited by the Liaison Committee for Medical Education, the college awards doctorates in Medicine (MD), and through its School of Biomedical Sciences, PhD and MS degrees in Medical Sciences. USF’s new SELECT MD program, in partnership with Lehigh Valley Health Network, focuses on emotional intelligence and leadership development. The School of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences, established in 1998, offers Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) and transitional DPT degrees. Additionally, the college’s Athletic Training Education Program offers both BS and MS degrees. Specially designed programs are available, including combined MD/MBA, MD/MPH, DPT/MPH programs and an Honors Research program. To meet the growing demand for a workforce skilled in science and technology, the college proves a wide range of master’s degrees and graduate certificates in emerging fields, such as biotechnology, bioinformatics, and metabolic and nutritional medicine.
The Morsani College of Medicine advances outstanding basic science and clinical research programs while always looking for ways to bridge the two. The college has led USF’s aggressive drive to achieve the fastest growth of federally-sponsored research in the nation. Interdisciplinary signature programs in such areas as neurosciences and cardiovascular sciences are researching genetic pathways that may provide individualized treatment and helping reframe how science improves human health. The college is home to one of the world’s largest freestanding Alzheimer’s centers where nationally-recognized scientists work alongside clinicians, and a USF Diabetes Center internationally recognized for more than $400 million in diabetes and autoimmune research. A new partnership to form a trauma network with HCA hospitals across the state will establish a broader trauma research database that may lead to better treatment.
The Tampa Bay region has been enriched by the medical students and residents who have graduated from USF, many of whom remain in the state to practice, as well as the health and economic benefits derived from the major academic medical center’s discoveries and creative entrepreneurial endeavors. The $38 million USF Health Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation in downtown Tampa will draw physicians and other health professionals from across the country to learn advanced surgical techniques using the latest robotic and medical devices in an environment that emphasizes team training and patient safety. USF Health’s partnership with The Villages, one of the largest retirement communities in the United States, aims to provide personalized care to all residents to ensure a healthier senior population.
The college is creating a model where prevention, diagnosis and treatment will be customized to the individual, with an emphasis on health care that puts patients at the center of the clinical experience. The college has developed strategic partnerships with leading hospitals in the Tampa Bay region and beyond. Two new outpatient medical centers, the Carol and Frank Morsani Center for Advanced Healthcare and the South Tampa Center for Advanced Healthcare offer “one-stop” patient care services, with health visits, tests and test results coordinated at one location. These facilities integrate the latest information technology, including electronic health records, and offer students the opportunity to create a true partnership with patients in an interdisciplinary learning environment. The college’s multispecialty group practice is the largest in West Central Florida. In 2011, 81 USF Health physicians were among the top 10 percent of physicians in the country according the Top Doctors list published by U.S. News & World Report and Castle Connolly.