Impact of an urban regional medical campus: perceptions of community stakeholders


  • Gerry Cooper Western University; University of Windsor
  • Maher El-Masri Ryerson University
  • Kyle DeMars Western University
  • Nathan Tam Western University
  • Nicole Sbrocca Windsor Regional Hospital
  • Mark Awuku Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, Western University
  • Lawrence Jacobs Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, Western University



Background: Regional medical campuses (RMC) have shown promise in addressing physician shortages. RMCs have been positively evaluated in rural/remote communities, however, it is unclear whether this model will be as beneficial in underserved urban areas. This study evaluated the impact of a RMC on a midsized urban city (Windsor, Ontario). We compare our results with a similar study conducted in a remote community in British Columbia (BC).

Methods: A broad array of community stakeholders representing different sectors were consulted using a semi-structured interview format replicated from the BC Northern Medical Program (NMP) study. Thematic analysis based on the resulting rich data was conducted within a grounded theory context.

Results: Twenty-three participants (52% male) representing healthcare, education, business, community and government/politico sectors were consulted. Their views regarding the Windsor Regional Medical Campus (WRMC) aligned around several themes: improved healthcare, enhanced community reputation, stimulated economic/community development, expanded training opportunities and an engaged community regarding the WRMC. These results were compared to the main findings of the NMP study with both similarities (e.g. increased community pride) and differences (e.g. resource concerns) discussed.

Conclusion: Community stakeholders provided strong support for the WRMC through their perceptions of its positive impact on this urban region. These findings are consistent with similar RMC studies in rural/remote areas. Those interested in developing a RMC might benefit from considering these findings.


Metrics Loading ...

Author Biography

Gerry Cooper, Western University; University of Windsor

Gerry  Cooper  EdD  has  worked  in  a  variety  of  roles  within  the  mental  health,  addiction  and  postsecondary  education  fields  since  1976.    From  1984  to  2008,  he  was  based  in  Sudbury  as  a  Manager (Northern  Ontario)  with  the  Addiction  Research  Foundation  (ARF)  –  Centre  for  Addiction  and Mental Health  (CAMH).  From  2008-2011  he  was  the  Associate Dean – Learner Affairs at the Northern Ontario School  of  Medicine  (NOSM)  where  he  also  was  an  Associate  Professor,  Clinical  Education  and  at Laurentian  University as  an  Adjunct  Professor,  School  of Social  Work. Gerry returned to his hometown in  September  2011  to  concurrently  become  the  Associate  Dean/Associate  Professor  (Department  of Psychiatry),  Schulich  School  of  Medicine  &  Dentistry  –  Windsor  Campus,  University  of  Western Ontario  and  the  Director,  Medical  Studies  at  the  University  of  Windsor. His  doctoral  thesis  from  the  Ontario  Institute  for  Studies in Education/University  of Toronto won  the  US  National  Problem  Gambling  Council’s  2001  Outstanding Dissertation Award. His primary research  interests  concern  help-seeking  behaviour  regarding  health  and  social  problems,  the  role  the Internet  might  play  in  that  connection,  medical  students’  identity  formation  with  a  special  focus  on medical  schools’  orientation  programs  and  the  socio-economic  benefits  of  distributed  medical education.  From  2015-2018  he  was  the  Canadian  Liaison  to  the  Association  of  American  Medical Colleges’  Group  on  Regional  Medical  Campuses  (Washington,  DC).  As  part  of  Schulich  Medicine’s 2018  convocation,  Gerry received  the  esteemed  Douglas  Bocking  Award  in  recognition  for  excellence in  medical  education  during  the  preceding  four  year  period.  He  retired  September 2018 but continues to act  as  a  Special  Advisor  to  the  Vice  Dean  (Education)  at  Schulich  Medicine  and  he  serves  as  a  member of  the  Board  of  Directors  of  Gambling  Research  Exchange  Ontario  (GREO).  At  Schulich  Medicine’s 2019 convocation he  was awarded  the  Professor Emeritus designation. 




How to Cite

Cooper G, El-Masri M, DeMars K, Tam N, Sbrocca N, Awuku M, Jacobs L. Impact of an urban regional medical campus: perceptions of community stakeholders. Can. Med. Ed. J [Internet]. 2020 Oct. 13 [cited 2024 Feb. 21];12(1):e46-e59. Available from:



Original Research