Provo City, a Medical School, and the East Bay Golf Course
Considering current discussions in the community and on social media related to a proposed medical school coming to Provo and its potential location, those managing the medical school development wish to provide accurate about the relationship of the medical school with Provo’s East Bay golf course prior to the official forthcoming medical education program announcement.
The founders of Provo’s Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions (RMUoHP) are the visionaries managing the development of the new proposed independent freestanding medical school under the direction of Wasatch Educational, the holding company of RMUoHP. Wasatch Educational is currently working with the City of Provo to finalize a proposal, subject to approval by the Provo City Council, to build the medical school on 24 acres of the northwestern portion of the East Bay Golf Course (approximately 11 percent of the total golf course acreage).
The development and construction of a proposed medical school includes professionally relocating three current holes to the southeast corner of the existing course at the expense of the developers. This will enhance the existing 18-hole Championship Course with no change to the existing 7-hole executive Short Course, Driving Range, and all other buildings and property currently on the course. The East Bay Golf Course will remain a viable community jewel for years to come.
Wasatch Educational plans to integrate extensive green space in and around the proposed medical school campus, creating a park-like atmosphere that both protects and preserves the environment, nature, wildlife, and bird life.
The economic impact of the proposed education facilities to the City of Provo and Utah County during the next ten years includes 1,588 jobs, $83.1 million in construction business, and approximately $100 million annual business infusion. It is anticipated that the proposed medical school will be a magnet for many more health, medical, biomedical, biotechnology, and related spin-off businesses, which may add hundreds of well-paying jobs and property tax monies to the community. Additionally, this proposed initiative should result in more than $8 million directed to the Provo School District in the first 15 years.
The new proposed medical school could join other Utah medical schools in developing physicians desperately needed to stem the tide of a national physician shortage. In fact, in Utah approximately 375 new physicians are needed each year to meet the growing medical needs. More than 400 students per year leave Utah to attend medical schools out of state and most do not return. Utah presently ranks near the bottom nationally at 43 out of 50 in overall physicians to population ratios and 49 out of 50 in primary care physicians to population ratios.
Creating a new medical school in Provo provides great opportunities to bring better access to healthcare for Utah residents and provides huge economic benefit. Additionally, opportunities for internship programs could be made available to Utah County junior high and high school students interested in pursuing a medical/healthcare career.