The Thomas F. Frist, Jr. College of Medicine at Belmont University has earned preliminary accreditation from its accrediting body, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME), allowing the College to begin recruiting students. Applications will open in early November for the College’s inaugural class of 50, which will matriculate in July 2024.
Named in honor of health care icon, former Air Force surgeon and co-founder of HCA Healthcare Dr. Thomas F. Frist, Jr., the Frist College of Medicine is focused on developing physicians who embrace a whole person approach to healing in a community of service learning.
“This announcement is years in the making, and I am incredibly proud of the many people who worked towards this milestone,” said Belmont University President Dr. Greg Jones. “Adding to Belmont’s robust health care offerings, the Frist College of Medicine will train physician leaders of character and purpose who champion life abundant for all people. We’re grateful for the example Dr. Frist’s career and passion for medicine has set for our efforts, and we’re proud to further our contributions to Nashville’s thriving health care community through the creation of this College.”
Earning preliminary accreditation follows a successful site visit from LCME in July. The College met 12 standards set by the accrediting body including medical school leadership, planning, finances, curriculum, faculty, facilities, recruitment and student support.
“Achieving preliminary accreditation is a testament to our unwavering commitment to the future of medical education, and we are thrilled to continue our efforts and begin recruiting our first class,” said Frist College of Medicine Dean Dr. Anderson Spickard. “Our team has dedicated years to building the Frist College, embodying Dr. Frist’s entrepreneurial spirit and care for the whole person. From creating the College’s framework and recruiting a dedicated team of faculty and staff to writing curriculum and creating networks for student support, our team has diligently worked toward this achievement. I am eager to see our mission fully come to life as we train the next generation of doctors to care, love and heal.”
The College will reside in a six-story, 246,000-square-foot facility including a state-of-the-art 50,000-square-foot simulation center — one of the most comprehensive in the nation — which will utilize virtual and augmented reality as part of its simulated offerings. Within Belmont’s health care corridor, one block from the Gordon E. Inman Center and McWhorter Hall, the facility has been designed to create a fully interdisciplinary educational experience, allowing students in existing University programs to work alongside aspiring MDs, just as they would in a clinical setting. The building is slated for spring 2024 completion.
LCME is co-sponsored by the Association of American Medical Colleges and the American Medical Association and is recognized by the United States Department of Education as the accrediting body for allopathic medical schools in the United States.
Accreditation through LCME is necessary for medical schools to participate in federal programs and grants and is required for graduates to receive licensure from most state medical licensing boards. Residency programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Education only give residency slots to physicians who graduate from LCME-accredited schools.