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June 27, 2016

Delaware cuts program that sends students to Philadelphia medical schools

Education Politics
011315_Jefferson_Carroll Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

Jefferson University Hospital in Center City Philadelphia.

A program that provides Delaware residents access to a pair of medical schools in Philadelphia has been cut from the state budget.

The Delaware Institute of Medical Education and Research (DIMER) was created in 1969 as an alternative to a state-supported medical school.

Currently, the program allows Thomas Jefferson University and Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) to serve as Delaware's de facto medical schools.

Each year, 20 admission slots at Jefferson's Sidney Kimmel Medical College and five slots at PCOM are reserved for Delaware residents who apply through DIMER.

Cutting the $1.8 million per year program will significantly hamper state hospitals' ability to hire doctors, according to Delaware Online:

"Delaware students will find residency programs near their medical school in other states and be less likely to return home.

“Experience has consistently shown that health care professionals who are trained in a particular geographic location tend to remain in that area for their professional career,” said Dr. Mark Tykocinski, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at Thomas Jefferson University in a statement.

Few doctors from outside the state choose to come to Delaware, partly because they did not go to school here, physicians say."

The program is credited with increasing the odds of acceptance for Delaware students.

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