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Medical School Again Earns Maximum Accreditation

June 30, 2015

Citation-Free for Second Consecutive Term

The Southern Illinois University School of Medicine has received full accreditation for another eight years from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). The committee had no areas of concern to report. This year’s accreditation marks the second consecutive citation-free accreditation SIU School of Medicine has received.

“In my experience this is an outstanding outcome. This is not typically achieved by medical schools,” said Dan Hunt, MD, Co-Secretary for the LCME.

The U.S. Department of Education recognizes LCME as the accrediting body for medical education programs leading to the M.D. degree in the United States. Accreditation signifies that national standards have been met for structure, function and performance of a medical education program. SIU's medical school has received accreditation by the LCME since 1972.

“The education of skilled, caring physicians for the region is our primary responsibility. The LCME’s accreditation is significant because it is a nationally respected indicator of the quality of our medical education program,” said Dean and Provost J. Kevin Dorsey, MD, PhD. “Accreditation also makes our students and alumni eligible to take the medical licensing exam and enter accredited residency programs, both of which are pre-requisites for physicians to receive a medical license in most states.”

In a letter to SIU President Randy Dunn, the LCME highlighted three areas of strength for the School of Medicine. One is the group of eight nurse educators who “enhance the educational program” in their support of the medical students’ learning of clinical skills. The LCME says that these nurse educators are “among the significant resources that the school provides to enhance the educational program.” The LCME also praised the Medical/Dental Education Preparatory Program (MEDPREP), the school’s preparatory program established in 1972 for disadvantaged students wishing to prepare for entry into health professions schools. The reviewers noted that this program’s graduates are highly successful at entering medical and dental schools around the country. The committee also praised SIU for its “culture of collegiality and mutual respect that permeates the school of medicine and creates a learning environment that fosters students’ professional growth.” The peer assessment in the students’ first year was given as an example.

“I’m proud that the School of Medicine consistently is recognized by national and international organizations for excellence and innovation in teaching medical students,” said SIU President Randy Dunn. “The school's unwavering commitment to achieving exceptional results in all areas of its mission — while providing the highest quality of medical care to the citizens of central and southern Illinois — is impressive. The fact that the school received a citation-free evaluation a second time is a very notable distinction.”

“The hard work of the team of faculty, administrators and students who worked for two years to prepare for the accreditation speaks to the earnestness with which the people of SIU dedicate themselves to ensuring that we can deliver to our learners the very best medical education. I’m very grateful,” Dorsey said.  

An LCME site team visited the school in January 2015 and met with over 150 medical students, faculty members, administrators and hospital leaders. More than 160 SIU School of Medicine staff, students and others participated in the internal review. The next LCME accreditation site visit is scheduled for 2023.

SIU School of Medicine’s mission is to assist the people of central and southern Illinois in meeting their health needs through education, patient care, research and community service. The School has more than 250 full-time physicians as well as other medical professionals, offering both primary care and specialized treatment services. The medical school works in partnership with hospitals and clinics throughout Illinois. Clinical outreach efforts extend SIU’s involvement to 46 Illinois communities. For information, call SIU’s Call Center, 217-545-8000 or 1-800-342-5748.

Schedule an interview or request more information by contacting SIU Medicine's Office of Public Relations and Communications at pr@siumed.edu or 217-545-3854.