A.T. Still University - School of Osteopathic Medicine Arizona
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Training the Next Generation of CHC Clinicians

Graduating Class of 2016

Back Row from Left to Right: Katherine Milbury, Robert Cohoon, Rory-Sean Deol, Gregory DeSimone, Timothy Lemaire, Irvin Huang, Dr. Lisa Watts, Dr. Lee Herskowitz, Mitra Kariminaser, Alison Clarke


"A great way to get students to health centers and recruit them for the future." – HC Leader

Overview A.T. Still SOMA/NWRPCA Campus

Research shows that physicians are more likely to work in areas where they have gone to medical school or done their residency. The A.T. Still Program helps build the Region X workforce pipeline by introducing more students to opportunities in Northwest health centers.

  • In 2008, Northwest Regional Primary Care Association (NWRPCA) partnered with Andrew Taylor (A.T.) Still University’s School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (SOMA) and the National Association of Community Health Center (NACHC) to form a Region X community campus medical school located in Portland, Oregon. The A.T. Still SOMA/NWRPCA Regional campus is one of 11 community health center –based campuses in this innovative model. 
  • The A.T. Still SOMA community campus partnerships increase the number of medical students trained specifically in community and migrant health centers (CMHCs).
  • The bulk of their clinical training is centered in health centers. This model has been successful in A.T. Still University’s dental school and PA school, and so was expanded to include physician training.
  • Osteopathic Medicine traditionally produces a high percentage of primary care physicians and has a focus on holistic care.
  • We are currently training future CMHC leaders by exposing them to the CMHC model across Region X.
  • The Hometown Program is a distinctive element of our selection process. Through this program, CMHCs can identify individuals in their community whom they endorse as applicants for our medical school. This helps to identify those who meet the mission of our program: to train quality physicians who will go on to serve in our health centers.

Benefits to Health Centers

  • Recruitment opportunities through the exposure of medical students to your health center.
  • Retention of staff by becoming an integral part of the educational process with “intangible” advantages including improved clinical acumen and re-energizing, which comes with teaching.
  • Enhance the reputation of your CMHCs as training institutions.
  • Student activities assisting your CMHCs, which may include preliminary charting, pre-screening of patients for health maintenance and research on topics affecting your CMHC.
  • Participation in a Region X innovative program to nurture students for continued practice in our region.

Program Successes to Date

  • Participation of 32 Region X CMHCs in providing student rotations: Average of 20 rotations per year within CMHCs in the disciplines of Family Medicine, Pediatrics, OB/GYN, Psychiatry and Internal Medicine.
  • Inaugural class graduated in June 2011.
  • 100% match rate for graduating class.
  • SOMA Classes of 2011 – 2014: residency match averages of over 63% to primary care and averages 87% to primary care and needed specialties.

How You Can Participate

  • Endorse a future doctor - Have a Hometown applicant to nominate? Please contact Lisa Watts DO.
  • Nominate a strong educator - Would you or someone within your CMHC make a good preceptor? Please contact Katelyn Siri.
  • Identify a local hospital - Is there a hospital within your community that you could recommend we contact? Please contact Naveen Kanithi.
  • Start the conversation - If you have further questions or other ideas for collaboration, please contact us!

Congratulations to the Class of 2015!

SOMA Gala 2015


Class of 2018

Class of 2018


ATSU/SOMA NWRPCA Campus Student Newsletter Archive








Contact info- NWRPCA campus

A.T. Still SOMA/NWRPCA Campus Student Classroom

Multnomah County - Southeast Health Center

3653 SE 34th Ave, Portland, OR 97202


Regional Director of Medical Education

Deane Defontes, MD

Phone: 503-988-3601 | Email: ddefontes@atsu.edu


Regional Director of Medical Education

Lee Herskowitz, DO, MBA, FAAP, FACOP

Phone: 503-730-5026 | Email: lherskowitz@atsu.edu


Regional Director of Medical Education

Lisa Watts, DO

Phone: 503-780-9522 | Email: Lwatts@atsu.edu


Rotations Specialist

Katelyn Siri

Phone: 503-504-1014 | Email: kmsiri@atsu.edu

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