April 29, 2020

Most Common Questions About California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine (CHSU COM) Answered

Choosing Medical Schools
Ryan Karmouta MD, MBA

California Health Sciences University of College of Ostoepathic Medicine: FAQs

Are you from central California and want to work in primary care? You may want to consider applying to the new medical school on the block, California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine. The medical school is so new that they will be welcoming their inaugural class of 75 medical students in July 2020. Here are answers to some of the most common questions about CHSU COM so that you can figure out if it is the right medical school for you.

1. Where is California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine?

It is located in the Central Valley in Clovis, California. Clovis is considered a suburb of Fresno. It is about 2.5 hours from Yosemite, 3 hours from San Francisco, and 3.5 hours from Napa Valley. 

2. How does it rank compared to other DO schools in California?

There are 3 DO schools in California:

  1. Western University of Health Sciences - College of Osteopathic Medicine located in Pomona, CA
  2. Touro University California College of Osteopathic Medicine located in Vallejo, CA
  3. California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine located in Clovis, CA

Based on US News Rankings (Primary Care), Western University and Touro University rank between 94-122, and CHSU COM is currently not ranked. 

3. How hard is it to get into California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine (CHSU COM)

Based on their admissions requirements, the applicant must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale. Applicants must also have a 498 or better on the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) with no sub-section below the 15th percentile. 

According to the AACOMAS applicant profile summary report, those who applied to DO schools had an average overall GPA of 3.43 and an average MCAT score of 502. The matriculant data (applicants who actually got in) shows slightly higher numbers, with an average overall GPA of 3.54 and a mean MCAT score of 503.8.

Comparing the average AACOMAS applicant profile (GPA 3.43 and MCAT 502) to the minimum admission requirements for CHSU COM (GPA 3.0 and MCAT 498), CHSU COM has a lower GPA and MCAT minimum requirement compared to the average AACOMAS applicant. CHSU COM has not published the average GPA and MCAT of those who applied or the average GPA and MCAT of those who interviewed, so it is difficult to say whether CHSU COM is “competitive” because the school only published the minimum GPA and MCAT requirement to apply. CHSU COM is less competitive if you compare the minimum requirements of CHSU COM to other similar schools. For example, similar schools in California such as Touro University have a required minimum MCAT score of 502 which is lower than CHSU COM (MCAT 498). From a numbers standpoint, CHSU COM is less competitive. For you, this could mean that this school would be a good option if you had lower GPA and MCAT scores, wanted to go to a DO school, and wanted to practice in Central Valley California. 

4. Is CHSU COM accredited?

Yes. According to its website, CHSU COM is accredited by the American Osteopathic Association’s Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA). CHSU-COM became the newest AACOM (American Association College of Osteopathic Medicine) member college in 2019. This means, given that its medical students meet all graduation requirements, all the graduates receive a DO degree, participate in the residency match, can enter all residency programs, and can achieve licensure in all 50 states.

5. Where do you submit the CHSU COM application and transcript?

CHSU COM participates in AACOMAS and applications for the Fall 2021 DO program will open on May 5, 2020 through AACOMAS.

6. What is the tuition for California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine

The average annual cost of CHSU COM is $53,500. Compared to the average annual cost of tuition for private medical schools in California, the tuition is less. The average annual cost of tuition for private medical schools in Northern California is $63,859 and in Southern California is $59,603.

7. Should I go to the California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine?

CHSU COM has a focus on providing more primary care physicians to help serve the Central Valley. Stated in their mission and vision, the program is focused on recruiting people from the Central Valley to improve the healthcare outcomes of the underserved population in the Central Valley of California. This does not mean that everyone who graduates from here is destined to only work in primary care and to only work in underserved areas in the Central Valley, but it does mean that there is a big emphasis on training physicians to serve their mission. 

CHSU COM developed a curriculum similar to other DO schools but with a mission to train physicians who want to serve the Central Valley. This means their medical students can choose any residency (outside of primary care) and can choose to practice anywhere (outside of Central Valley), but the admissions committee will give preference to those from the Central Valley and who want to serve the Central Valley. Even within the school’s own application process, you are required to write an essay discussing how you fit into CHSU COM’s mission and values. The clinical clerkship training is also developed so that students can connect with the community and engage in taking care of the underserved population in the Central Valley. The clinical curriculum also focuses on rotating medical students to community health centers and additional primary care clerkships. All this to show that the admissions committee is serious in its dedication to choosing applicants who meet their  mission and vision. 

Should you apply to CHSU COM if you are not interested in primary care? The answer is that it depends. The focus and mission of the school should certainly be one factor you should consider, but there are other factors such as location and fit. If you have specific questions about which schools you should apply to, AcceptMed provides medical consulting services to help you through your medical application and help you figure out which medical schools would be best for you. 

Key takeaway points about California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine

There are pros and cons to attending a new medical school, especially a school that intentionally looks for those who want to practice and serve the Central Valley. Some pros to applying to CHSU COM would be lower competition and higher chances of acceptance if you want to serve the area Some cons would be limited information available due to the school being new and difficulty in justifying how you fit within their mission and vision if you are not from the Central Valley. Decisions such as coming up with your list of schools to apply to can be difficult. If you are having a tough time figuring it out, reach out to one of our professionals at AcceptMed for one-on-one medical consulting so that you can choose the right schools that result in the highest chance of getting in. 


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