Established in 1998 as a graduate healthcare institution, Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions (RMUoHP) has a reputation for providing high quality, rigorous healthcare education programs; a diverse, qualified student body and accomplished alumni representing all 50 states; and, recruiting a nationally-respected faculty experienced in healthcare practice, research, administration, and education. RMUoHP offers the following certificate and degree programs:

  • Learning Design in Healthcare Education Graduate Certificate
  • Post-graduate Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate
  • Master of Science in Health Science
  • Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology
  • Master of Physician Assistant Studies
  • Doctor of Occupational Therapy
  • Doctor of Physical Therapy
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice
  • Doctor of Clinical Science in Speech-Language Pathology
  • Doctor of Science in Health Science

The University is accredited through the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) and holds various programmatic accreditations. Additional information may be found at

The proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine (NCOM; applicant status – seeking accreditation) is currently in development as a freestanding, independent College of Osteopathic Medicine located in Utah Valley. Initial planning for the proposed college of osteopathic medicine began in 2010 in response to the national shortage of healthcare providers and with a focus on educating and retaining quality primary care providers in Utah (see source examples below). The College is in applicant status currently pursuing accreditation from the American Osteopathic Association Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA). Applicant status is offered without rights or privileges of the COCA accreditation, and does not establish, suggest, or imply recognition of accreditation status by the COCA. Milestones in the accreditation process must be met over the coming years and the proposed COM must achieve Pre-Accreditation status in order to admit students. The timeline for recruiting and admitting students is dependent on securing that status.

  • According to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), unless immediate action is taken, the US supply of doctors will be 91,500 short of the number needed by 2020 and 130,600 physicians short by 2025 (Modern Healthcare, 11.11.13, and American Academy of Medical Colleges Center for Workforce Studies).
  • The need for more physicians is one of the Top 10 challenges and opportunities for hospitals and particularly those hospitals in rural areas that have a harder time recruiting physicians. Additionally, with an aging population that is expected to nearly double from 2013 to 2025, specialists will also face higher demand to treat a number of chronic conditions relating to cardiology, rheumatology, urology, dermatology and neurology (Becker’s Hospital Review, 12.16.13).
  • Utah’s physician shortage is even more severe than in most states. The physician shortage continues to intensify with the influx of new patients, and it will further worsen as the number of people over 65 (who use more than twice the health care of younger adults) doubles. The number of Utahans 65 and older is expected grow by 50 percent between 2000 and 2015, and by 155 percent by 2030. (Utah Medical Education Council (2012), Utah’s Physician Workforce, 2010: A Study of the Supply and Distribution of Physicians in Utah, Salt Lake City, UT.)

Dean of the proposed Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine

John J. Dougherty, D.O., FACOFP, FAOASM, FAODME

Dr. Dougherty received his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree from the University of Health Science – College of Osteopathic Medicine, NKA Kansas City University – College of Osteopathic Medicine (KCU-COM), in 1992. He graduated from Culver Stockton College in Canton, Missouri, in 1988 with a B.S. in Biology and Education. He completed a one-year rotating internship and first year of Family Medicine residency at the Osteopathic Medical Center of Texas, UNT/HSC-TCOM, in Fort Worth, completing residency and serving as founding chief resident in the new Family Medicine residency at Oak Hill Hospital in Joplin, Missouri. Dr. Dougherty is board certified in Family Medicine and holds a Certificate of Added Qualifications in Sports Medicine by the American Osteopathic Board of Family Physicians.

Dr. Dougherty has been serving as Dean for the College of Osteopathic Medicine at Touro University Nevada in Henderson, Nevada. Prior to that he was the Interim Dean for KCU-COM/ Joplin and Senior Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs and Graduate Medical Education at KCU-COM. He previously functioned as Acting Dean at KCU-COM and as Chair of the Department of Family Medicine. He is an Inspection Team Leader for the Council on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA).

Dr. Dougherty is currently President of the American Osteopathic Academy of Sports Medicine (AOASM) and an Organizational Physician for the Kansas City Royals with 10 years of service in the Dominican Republic in collaboration with the Kansas City Royals and Dominican Republic Ministry of Health. He is a National and International speaker; a member of the AOA Circle of Leaders, Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education’s (ACGME) Osteopathic Principles Committee; on the Editorial Board of the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association (JAOA); a Board member for DOCare International; and Chair for the Musculoskeletal Injury and Prevention Committee of the AOA Bureau of Osteopathic Clinical Education and Research (BOCER).

He holds Fellowship in three Osteopathic colleges (ACOFP, AOASM, and AODME) and he has been honored with the Distinguished Service Award from ACOFP and has received the Medallion Award from Missouri Osteopathic Society. Dr. Dougherty completed the ACOFP Physician Leadership Institute in the Administration Track and is a Certified Physician Leader in Administration. He has accomplished the AACOM’s Senior Leadership Development Program, a National Health Policy Fellowship through Ohio University, and holds a Certificate in Finance from the University of California, San Diego, Rady School of Management. He was voted Family Physician of the Year by the Missouri ACOFP in 2014 and named Education Health Care Headliners by VegasInc Magazine in 2018.