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The primary mission of the Quillen College of Medicine is to educate future physicians, especially those with an interest in primary care, to practice in underserved rural communities. In addition, the College is committed to excellence in biomedical research and is dedicated to the improvement of health care in Northeast Tennessee and the surrounding Appalachian Region.
The Quillen College of Medicine endeavors to meet community and regional health needs by identification, creation, and execution of the necessary programs through utilization of its diverse resources. The college is a major health care provider for East Tennessee. In view of this responsibility, the college emphasizes primary care as the focus of medical practice and training programs. The primary care physician is defined as the physician of first and continuing contact, coordinating the entire care of the patient. Primary medical care is a function rather than a discipline. This care is provided by family physicians, general internists, general pediatricians, and obstetricians/gynecologists. In addition to meeting the clinical and service responsibilities, the college also supports a significant research endeavor.
The Quillen College of Medicine has an experienced and qualified faculty in the biological, behavioral, and clinical sciences. In addition to the full-time faculty, a number of practicing physicians in the community participate in the educational process as both part-time and volunteer faculty.
East Tennessee State University's Quillen College of Medicine is the only medical school in the Tennessee Board of Regents System and, with the College of Nursing, College of Clinical and Rehabilitative Health Sciences, Gatton College of Pharmacy, and College of Public Health, serves as the system's health sciences center. In just three decades, the College has developed into one of the nation's leading schools for rural medicine and primary care training, an honor consistently recognized by U.S. News & World Report.
Founded in 1974 on a mission to train primary care physicians and to increase the number of doctors in rural communities, the Quillen College of Medicine, with more than 1,500 graduates, has remained true to its original mission. Thirty-five years later, Fitzhugh Mullan published his innovative "social mission" research in the Annals of Internal Medicine, demonstrating that Quillen is ranked first in the nation for primary care graduates.