The University of Kansas School of Medicine in Salina (KUSM-Salina) is a rural, four-year regional medical school campus created in response to the need to educate more physicians interested in rural medicine in Kansas. The campus was opened in 2011 with a first class of eight students. The campus now has a full complement of thirty-two students, making it the smallest four-year medical school in North America. Since its opening, KUSM-Salina has graduated three classes. Many of the graduates are engaged in primary care residencies, and many plan to return to rural Kansas to practice.
Students are able to complete all foundational science studies and clinical clerkships in Salina. An important element of the medical school’s academic program is simulation training. Simulation exercises consist of standardized patient encounters and practicing procedures on high-fidelity manikins. Standardized patients are individuals trained to portray patients, allowing students to practice taking a history, performing a physical exam, and developing a problem list and treatment plan. High-fidelity manikins allow students to witness and respond to many life-threatening situations that are impossible to simulate with standardized patients. These activities allow students to develop necessary skills in a low-risk, non-threatening environment. It is critical that the Salina medical school campus provide state-of-the-art, realistic simulation opportunities for medical students.
In June 2018, the KUSM-Salina will move to a newly-renovated, state-of-the-art health education building in downtown Salina, nearly tripling the size of the educational facility. Gifts to KUSM-Salina will be used to purchase additional simulation equipment needed in the new health education building.