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Detroit — The Detroit Medical Center and Meharry Medical College are expanding their affiliation to increase medical education and training for Meharry students.

A new, two-year agreement announced Monday will hike the number of medical students in DMC hospitals, according to a news release by the partners.

Nashville, Tennessee-based Meharry Medical College is one of the largest and oldest historically black academic health science centers, and the first medical school in the south for African-Americans, according to its website.

The college has 11,000 applications each year.

The DMC began accepting Meharry students into the program last July and has medical students training at DMC’s Sinai-Grace Hospital. The new deal increases the number of students to all DMC hospitals.

"We are committed to all of our academic partner relationships, and this expanded affiliation with Meharry provides even more medical students with an optimum learning environment, said Dr.Anthony Tedeschi, DMC’s chief executive officer. "There are few other instructional settings with the type of patient diversity found at the Detroit Medical Center."

The DMC, the region's largest health system, sponsors more than 100 residency and fellowship programs, with 1,000 students training annually from Wayne State University and Michigan State University.

The DMC has been a primary medical partner with Wayne State University's Medical School for decades, but the relationship has been tumultuous. The partnership remains as new health care partners are sought.

DMC officials said the partnership with Meharry would not hinder their primary partnership with the two Michigan universities.

►More: WSU medical school hopes to salvage partnership deal with Henry Ford

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Veronica Mallett, Meharry Medical College senior vice president of health affairs, said she understands that Detroit is facing a shortage of primary care physicians.

"By providing our student's early exposure, they will think of the DMC for residency and possibly return to further their training," Mallett said. "This pipeline could ultimately help the citizens of Detroit through improved access to quality of healthcare."

srahal@detroitnews.com
Twitter: @SarahRahal_

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