According to an announcement this week, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine have been awarded a $2,880,342 grant.
Covering a 3-year period, the funding from United Health Foundation will go towards supporting the Colonia Integrated Care Program: VIDAS (Valley Interprofessional Development And Services).
“The initiative aims to unite the region by building an integrated, interprofessional collaborative that will create a sustainable model for health care delivery to the most vulnerable members of the community.”
The grant is part of United Health Foundation’s “Helping Build Healthier Communities” program that is providing critical resources to nonprofit community-based organizations throughout the United States to improve the health of communities.
“We are delighted to partner with United Health Foundation to expand our work in our community to help improve lives,” said UT Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine founding dean Francisco Fernández, M.D.
“By supporting the Colonia Integrated Care Program: VIDAS, the United Health Foundation grant helps us define the new School of Medicine as fully committed to the health and well-being of the very communities in which we hope a large number of its future students will call home.”
Development, accreditation and staffing for the School of Medicine are underway for a fall 2016 opening and its inaugural class of 50 first-year medical students.
According to the press release, The University of Texas System will open UT Rio Grande Valley in the fall of 2015 and the School of Medicine in 2016. Current estimates are that some 30,000 students will attend the school which will have forcasted research expenditures exceeding $20 million and an endowment of more than $70 million. All of which will make UT Rio Grande Valley one of the largest Hispanic-serving institutions in the country.