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Marshall B. Ketchum University Affiliates with St. Joseph Heritage Healthcare for Clinical Education


The developing School of Physician Assistant Studies at Marshall B. Ketchum University (MBKU), finalized an agreement with St. Joseph Heritage Healthcare (SJHH), which will be the cornerstone clinical facility for students during their clinical rotations.

From the expansive network, students at Ketchum University’s School of Physician Assistant Studies will have the opportunity to learn from physicians all across Orange County.  The numerous outpatient and urgent care facilities will expose students to diverse clinical experiences and patient encounters, which is critical to the development of professional competencies for physician assistants.

“With gratitude to C.R. Burke, President and CEO, and Robert O’Neil, Vice President-Physician Services, at SJHH, this new partnership facilitates the accomplishment of our mission, which is to educate individuals who can provide the highest quality health care.  The entire St. Joseph Heritage Healthcare network perennially achieves excellence and I have no doubt our students will collect a wealth of learning opportunities,” said Teresa Thetford, PA-C, RNP, MS, Director of the School of Physician Assistant Studies.

The School of Physician Assistant Studies plans to offer a 27-month, post-baccalaureate program leading to the degree, Master of Medical Science (MMS). The first professional year curriculum provides the foundation for clinical practice with instruction on patient assessment, medical sciences, and pharmacotherapeutics. The second professional year of the physician assistant program focuses on direct patient care in the various clinics and health centers of the clinical program. In order to graduate, students must successfully complete all 12 clinical rotations, including the Master’s Capstone Project.

About St. Joseph Heritage Healthcare
Part of St. Joseph Health, St. Joseph Heritage Healthcare (SJHH) includes seven medical groups in California, four of which are in Southern California. In addition to the medical groups, SJHH supports four distinct affiliated physician networks throughout the region. Combined, they provide Orange County residents access to more than 450 primary care physicians and more than 1,000 physicians in virtually every specialty. SJHH medical groups and affiliated physicians have received top honors from various organizations, including the Orange County Medical Association for Physicians of Excellence and the Integrated Healthcare Association with distinction in clinical quality.

About Marshall B. Ketchum University
Established in 1904, the Marshall B. Ketchum University is a private, non-profit, educational institution.  The University confers a four-year, professional degree, Doctor of Optometry (O.D.); a Master of Science in Vision Science (M.S.) degree; and a Master of Medical Sciences (MMS) degree.  The University is also adding the School of Physician Assistant Studies as the first step in the development of an interprofessional healthcare campus.  Marshall B. Ketchum University provides a diversity of healthcare training opportunities in an environment fully focused on medical professionalism, combining advanced clinical training with innovative teaching methods.

The University's superior 109-year-old optometric clinical education program provides patient care experiences in community optometric clinics; exposure to the delivery of optometric care in multi-disciplinary settings; and experiences in practices serving a wide variety of ethnic and socio-economic patient groups.  Marshall B. Ketchum University owns and operates two premier eye and vision care centers – the Eye Care Center located on its campus in Fullerton, CA, and the Optometric Center of Los Angeles located on Broadway at Martin Luther King Boulevard.

Southern California College of Optometry
: Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE) of the American Optometric Association

School of Physician Assistant Studies: The University has applied for accreditation pending
approval from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), and provisional accreditation from the Accreditation Review Commission on the Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA). The School of Physician Assistant Studies at Marshall B. Ketchum University anticipates matriculating its first class in August 2014, pending WASC approval and accreditation-provisional from ARC-PA. Accreditation-Provisional is an accreditation status for a new PA program that has not yet enrolled students, but at the time of its initial accreditation review, has demonstrated its preparedness to initiate a program in accordance with the accreditation Standards.