Application for medical school is resubmitted

Application for medical school is resubmitted

A more detailed application for preliminary accreditation to establish a medical school in Martinsville (the College of Henricopolis School of Medicine, or CHSM) was resubmitted to the national accrediting agency on Tuesday.

“We are submitting the final application, which is approaching 300 pages,” said Dr. Noel Boaz, president of the medical school. He also is president of the medical school’s nonprofit arm, Integrative Centers for Science and Medicine (ICSM).

““We’re very happy with the application,” Boaz said. He added he feels that good answers were provided to everything that was asked. “I’m confident we have a good shot at getting approved.”

Among the new or more detailed information included in the application to the Liaison Committee on Medical Education(or LCME, the accrediting agency) are detailed financial information, information about how the “physical plant” (campus)is coming together, available housing, information about an agreement with a publisher for CHSM faculty to write a 13-volume textbook series.

The application says or references the following progress for the medical school and ICSM since 2013: “In May of that year a local physician and philanthropist donated a 25,000-square-foot building to be used for a medical education building. ICSM undertook a fund-raising campaign that raised over $1.3 million in 2014 to remove asbestos from the building, to begin interior demolition in preparation for renovations, to develop detailed architectural plans, and to purchase two vacant lots north of the building for construction of a ‘Physic Garden’ to be used in the pharmacological curriculum.”

It adds: “The City of Martinsville donated in 2014 additional land surrounding the building and another small building to be used as an interpretive and learning center. A city-backed bond issue in 2016 for $3 million will allow purchase of four additional buildings and land to comprise a 6.5-acre campus for the medical school in central Martinsville.” (The bond issue is pending.)

The application says the affiliated nonprofit ICSM Medical Center, which began operating on March 31, 2014, occupies the Martinsville Medical Building, nine-tenths of a mile north of the medical school campus and near the 226-bed Memorial Hospital of Martinsville and Henry County. These are future sites for CHSM third- and fourth-year clinical clerkships.

The medical school received provisional certification from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia to offer the M.D. degree in Virginia, contingent on LCME accreditation.

The medical school campus is centered on the Shackelford Medical Education Building (a former grocery store at Fayette and North Moss streets), which will be used for basic science instruction for first- and second-year medical school students.

“The campus will expand in 2016 to the north and east to comprise a 6.5-acre site with six buildings, including a Student Activity Center, Student Health Center, Clinical Sciences Building, Biomedical Research Building and various administrative and faculty offices,” the application says. (Last month, officials announced a plan for ICSM to purchase from the Lester Group three buildings on Franklin Street and several acres of land bounded by Moss, Liberty and Franklin streets.)

The medical school has temporary administrative offices in the Jefferson Plaza Building.

“Anchored by Memorial Hospital of Martinsville and Henry County, one of the larger LifePoint hospitals,” he medical school has signed or pending clinical clerkship agreements with the 16 hospitals and medical centers in the LifePoint Hospital system in Virginia, North Carolina and West Virginia within an approximately 250-mile radius of Martinsville. “These hospitals will host ongoing clinical clerkships for an average of 20 third- and fourth-year CHSM medical students at a time, or 320 students,” the application states.

It also says there are 62 hospitals in the LifePoint system located in 20 states and seven hospitals in the Pioneer Community Hospital system (Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and Mississippi), and the medical school will use these networks to negotiate and sign agreements with individual hospitals as needed for its third- and fourth-year clinical clerkship program.

As for financial resources available to the medical school or anticipated for the medical school over the next six years, the application says:

For the purposes of the LCME application, the “medical school” includes the educational arm of operations (CHSM), clinical arm (the medical center of ICSM) and the research arm “incorporated and currently operating under a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporate model as several ICSM named research institutes and centers.”

The application says total start-up revenues for the medical school (CHSM) include the following:

“(1) A total of $43,229 was paid for 24,923 shares of Common Stock in the (CHSM) benefit corporation by 18 small investors in 2013-14 to initiate start-up of the medical school including payment of $25,000 for LCME pre-accreditation.

“(2) The medical school’s business plan requires an investment by one or more major investors of $25 million in the medical school holding corporation, Henricopolis Holding, Inc. (HHI). This investment is expected by March 31, 2016, and will be in the form of preferred stock not to exceed a 25% interest in the equity of the corporation, a minority ownership position.

“(3) $150,000 of Virginia state funding was allocated to CHSM from a Virginia Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission (VTICRC) Tobacco Revitalization Opportunity Fund (TROF) grant of $800,000 received in 2014-15 by the City of Martinsville for the benefit of the medical school.

“(4) $25 million (CHSM in part, return from endowment) is expected from Virginia state funding.”

ICSM revenues and assets as a partner with the medical school from 2013 onward include: A $25,000-square-foot building valued at $350,000 was donated to ICSM in 2013; $400,000 in tax-deductible contributions to ICSM were received from people and corporations in 2013-14 as part of the “Shackelford Campaign,” a local fund-raising effort; a small building and surrounding property valued at $16,000 were donated to ICSM for use by the medical school by the city of Martinsville; $600,000 of the VTICRC TROF grant (mentioned above) was applied by ICSM to building renovation, operations, personnel costs and equipment purchase.

Other ICSM revenues and assets as a partner with the medical school include: a $3 million bond issue through the city of Martinsville, pending for release in February 2016 (to be combined with matching funds of $600,000 from the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development in the form of an Institutional Redevelopment Fund grant to complete renovation of the basic science building and to purchase land and buildings for the medical school; a $2.0 million fund-raising campaign (Renaissance Martinsville 2016); and $25 million (from the sale of preferred stock mentioned above).

The medical school is seeking $15 million through the federal investment EB-5 Regional Center program (representing 18 percent of the total funding for the college). According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website, “Congress created the EB-5 Program in 1990 to stimulate the U.S. economy through job creation and capital investment by foreign investors. In 1992, Congress created the Immigrant Investor Program, also known as the Regional Center Program. This sets aside EB-5 visas for participants who invest in commercial enterprises associated with regional centers approved by USCIS based on proposals for promoting economic growth.”

ICSM also will pursue $12 million in federal Certified Development Company loans.

The application indicates about $12.8 million in tuition is estimated per class when the medical school opens.

Boaz said: ”There is no formally required minimum amount of funding but the consensus is that $25 million should be in hand to start a medical school. We are seeking this amount entirely from investment and from the General Assembly, respectively. If we get both, it will increase our endowment. … Over the first two years the projected income to both CHSM and ICSM is $58.1 million.”

The LCME will consider the medical school application at its meeting in February, at which time LCME could, basically, approve or reject the application or say it is incomplete and do it again, Boaz said. If LCME approves the submission, the medical school’s status would improve from “applicant school ” to “candidate school.” That would clear the way for an LCME committee to do a site visit and report.

According to the LCME website, the next step would be for LCME to review the site survey team’s report and determine if the candidate school meets the standards. If so, the LCME would vote to grant preliminary accreditation to the program for an entering class in an upcoming academic year. “Once preliminary accreditation is granted, the program may begin to recruit applicants and accept applications for enrollment,” the website says.

Boaz said the target is for the medical school to open in fall 2017.


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