Cleveland State University to debut new interprofessional model for health-care education

Monday, December 16, 2013

To keep pace with the dramatic transformation of America's health-care industry, Cleveland State University (CSU) in conjunction with Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED), is pursuing a bold new collaborative approach to health-care education.

CSU broke ground today for a health sciences building that will be a state-of-the-art facility where future physicians, pharmacists, nurses and other health professionals will learn to work together at the forefront of collaborative health-care education and research.

In addition to housing CSU programs offered by the School of Nursing and the School of Health Sciences, the building will also house the Cleveland cohort of NEOMED's programs within their College of Medicine, College of Pharmacy and College of Graduate Studies and will serve as the home of the NEOMED-CSU Partnership for Urban Health, a trailblazing partnership dedicated to training physicians and other health professionals that deliver primary care services to address the unique health-care needs of metropolitan communities.

Set to open in June 2015 on the corner of Euclid Avenue and East 22nd Street, the $45 million, 100,000-square-foot facility will foster interprofessional teaching, learning and research in community-centered health care. NEOMED will enter a 25-year lease to occupy about 20 percent of the new building.

"Our new health sciences building will foster an exciting new model for health-care education," said CSU President Ronald M. Berkman. "For too long, health-care education has been relegated to silos, with little or no interaction among aspiring physicians, nurses and other health professionals. In a city renowned for world-class health care, our collaborative approach to health-care education will lead to new efficiencies that ensure better health, better care and lower health-care costs." Despite growing evidence that patients benefit from streamlined health care delivered by tight-knit teams of professionals, most institutions continue to train these professionals separately, with no emphasis on developing team skills or nurturing a mutual understanding of different professional roles, according to a recent report by the Josiah Macy Foundation.

In marked contrast to this norm, CSU's new facility will enable a forward-thinking culture of collaboration. By design, with an emphasis on multifunctional collaborative spaces, the building will facilitate dynamic interaction. Interdisciplinary team learning will occur in flexible classroom spaces and teaching clinics, where students will interact with each other and with community clients.

"Northeast Ohio Medical University is very proud to be part of this vital partnership with Cleveland State University," said NEOMED President Jay A. Gershen. "Growing needs for health professionals that deliver primary care services have created a great demand for a more diverse health-care workforce with interdisciplinary skills to care for underserved populations, especially within America's cities. Meeting this demand will be central to the mission of the new health sciences facility. Also, bringing the resources of two Ohio universities together to create this first-in-the-nation program demonstrates a prudent and wise use of higher education dollars."

The NEOMED-CSU Partnership for Urban Health is led by Dr. Sonja Harris-Haywood, an award-winning family medicine educator, physician and researcher. The partnership encourages economically disadvantaged students from Greater Cleveland to complete undergraduate coursework at CSU, enroll in the College of Medicine at NEOMED to earn a doctor of medicine degree and return after residency to work in medically underserved communities in Northeast Ohio. Currently housed in the Union Building at CSU, the partnership admitted its second class in August 2013, with 35 pre-medical students. The Partnership for Urban Health will also recruit and train students from the other health professions.

The Health Sciences facility will include:

  • An Innovation Center that supports creative teaching and learning strategies as well as collaborative and innovative research;
  • A Speech and Hearing Clinic, complete with observation and testing labs.
  • Nursing simulation labs;
  • Audiology labs;
  • An occupational therapy/physical therapy training room;
  • The CSU Health and Wellness Services Department;
  • NEOMED standardized patient exam rooms; a pharmacy simulation lab and classrooms
  • Distance-learning rooms and classrooms for students from both universities;
  • "Touchdown" rooms for small group learning;
  • Quiet study areas;
  • Lounges;
  • A cafe;
  • A large central atrium for informal gatherings and events;
  • Faculty and administrative offices clustered to maximize collaboration.

"With all of these tremendous assets under one roof, we will offer an exceedingly well-rounded and uniquely hands-on education in health care," said CSU President Berkman. "We hope it will serve as a model for other programs across the country." Construction of the Health Sciences facility is scheduled to begin this month. The building was designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli of New Haven, Connecticut, a leading international architectural firm whose credits include the World Financial Center in New York City, Malaysia's Petronas Towers and the International Finance Centre in Hong Kong, as well as Cleveland's Key Tower and several Cleveland Clinic buildings. The Cleveland architectural office of Stantec is assisting with the project.

About Cleveland State University

Founded in 1964, Cleveland State University is a public research institution that provides a dynamic setting for Engaged Learning. With an enrollment of more than 17,000 students, eight colleges and more than 200 academic programs, CSU was again chosen for 2014 as one of America's best colleges by U.S. News & World Report. About Northeast Ohio Medical University

Northeast Ohio Medical University is a public, community-based medical university and academic health center with a mission to improve the health and economy of Northeast Ohio. For 40 years, NEOMED has worked in collaboration with its educational, clinical and research partners to successfully train health professionals and medical researchers who serve and impact the region and beyond. The University trains students in a team-based, interprofessional environment and offers doctor of medicine (M.D.) and doctor of pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degrees, in addition to master's and doctoral degrees and research opportunities in other medical areas. Still burning bright after 40 years; visit www.neomed.edu/40.