New medical school at U of H, first in Houston in nearly a half-century

Houston has grown by more than four million people since the last medical school was founded in 1972 and is facing a primary care physician shortage. Texas ranks 47th in the country in primary care physician-to-population ratio.

The mission of the new College of Medicine is to address this shortage in urban and rural areas by manning the front lines of community health with highly-trained champions of preventive care.

College of Medicine founding dean Dr. Stephen Spann said they're excited about improving healthcare locally, throughout the state and beyond.

He added that even though Houston has the largest medical center in the world, sometimes there's a shortage of primary care physicians here.

"Once we admit our first class, we would have 30 students per year, per class for the first two classes, then we would go to 60 students per year, per class for two years and then go to our full contingent of 120 students per year," said Spann.

He said he expects accreditation next Spring by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, and then can start admitting students.

"We are actively planning a new standalone medical education building, which we hope will open in the summer of 2022," said Spann.

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