LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) — Medical school officials at Texas Tech University say they will be the first in the U.S. to offer aspiring family doctors a three-year degree plan at half the cost of a traditional four-year path.
The program is aimed at addressing a national shortage of family physicians. A study four years ago estimated the U.S. will need about 39,000 more family doctors by 2020.
Texas Tech announced the plan Tuesday, the same day President Barack Obama signed health care reform legislation that is expected to add millions of patients when it kicks into full gear in 2014.
The three years of medical school will cost about $75,000. After getting their degrees, doctors will spend three years in residency with a family practice.