Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences (PNWU) is a private, non-profit medical school for osteopathic medicinelocated in Yakima, Washington, United States. Founded in 2005, the university’s inaugural program was the first new medical school to open in the Pacific Northwest in sixty years. PNWU grants the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree, and graduated its first class of physicians in May 2012.
The Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine is fully accredited by the American Osteopathic Association’s Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation.
The Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences opened in 2005, after planning and fundraising to open a new osteopathic medical school in Washington State. In 2007, PNWU received provisional accreditation. In 2008, the first courses began, and the university’s main building, Butler-Haney Hall, opened at a cost of $13 million. In 2009, the university received a $400,000 federal grant to expand the College of Allied Health Sciences.
In 2012, the inaugural class of 69 students graduated, earning the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree.
Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences educates and trains health care professionals emphasizing service among rural and medically underserved communities throughout the Northwest.
The Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences consists of a single college, the College of Osteopathic Medicine, which grants the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree. It is a four-year program. Years 1 and 2 of the DO program consist primarily of classroom-based learning, which focus on the basic sciences.
Years 3 and 4 of the DO program consist of clinical rotations in off-site communities. The school currently has 18 sites for clinical rotations over the five-state region of Alaska,Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. Rather than all of the students receiving their clinical training in Yakima, students are required to go to many parts of the Northwestern United States to receive hands-on training. These sites include Fairbanks, Alaska; Blackfoot, Idaho; and Portland, Oregon among 15 others.
In 2015, PNWU was awarded a $1.75 million grant to develop an interprofessional education program from the Health Resources and Services Administration.
A dual DO/MPH degree is offered in association with Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine.
The campus now consists of four buildings. Butler-Haney Hall is the center of the school where instruction and training occur, as well as housing the College of Osteopathic Medicine’s Library. A new addition to Butler-Haney Hall was completed in 2013. Cadwell Center opened in January 2011, and provides additional rooms for study, classroom and research space. A new University Conference Center is expected to be complete by the spring of 2015 and this building coupled with Iron Horse Lodge (Administration building) brings the total of four buildings to the growing PNWU campus. Starting in the fall of 2015 PNWU in conjunction with Washington State University will be opening a Pharmacy school which will be granting PharmD degrees. A local business developer is in the finishing touches of completing a three-story series of single-, two- and three-bedroom apartments immediately to the south of campus.
A total of 430 students are in attendance at PNWU for the 2014–15 academic years. About 46 percent of PNWU students are female; 54 percent are male. About 69% are White/Non-Hispanic, 14% Asian/Pacific Islander, 6% Hispanic, 6% identify as two or more ethnicities, and the remaining students are of unknown ethnicity.
Students at PNWU participate in a number of clubs on campus and an active student government association. Clubs on campus include:American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians (ACOEP), American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians (ACOFP), American Medical Student Association (AMSA). There is an active chapter of Sigma Sigma Phi, the osteopathic honors society.
The College of Osteopathic Medicine is accredited by the American Osteopathic Association’s Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation.