Congressman Guy Reschenthaler has included Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s proposed college of osteopathic medicine project among his FY25 requested community projects.

The funding request is for $2 million. It is described by Congressman Reschenthaler as funding to support facility infrastructure, equipment, and other project-related expenses for a school of osteopathic medicine and includes his statement that “this is a valuable use of taxpayer funds because it will help build a rural osteopathic medical school in an underserved area and increase healthcare access for the surrounding areas.”

“I have spoken with Congressman Reschenthaler about the important role universities must play to support community needs,” IUP President Michael Driscoll said.

“The proposed osteopathic college of medicine will greatly enhance IUP’s ability to meet the specific healthcare challenges of our rural region. Once it is operational, the college will provide a financially feasible career path for students to become medical doctors and will add physician resources that are sorely lacking in rural western Pennsylvania. We appreciate Congressman Reschenthaler’s support and look forward to working with him as the FY25 process advances to secure final passage of this funding,” President Driscoll said.

This support from the Congressman follows a $150,000 allocation in the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2024, which was sponsored by Congressman Reschenthaler and Senator John Fetterman and signed into law by President Joe Biden on March 9.

In December 2022, IUP’s Council of Trustees endorsed the exploration of a possible development of a college of osteopathic medicine at IUP. The university chose to explore a proposed college of osteopathic medicine based on several factors, including the critical need for rural health care: there are not enough trained physicians to provide care to Pennsylvania’s citizens—the ratio of patients to available primary care physicians is 1,367 to 1, according to the United Health Foundation.