WORCESTER, Mass.―The University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) was ranked seventh in primary care among the nation’s 129 fully accredited medical schools and 25 schools of osteopathic medicine by weekly news magazine U.S.News & World Report, to be released Thursday, April 23. UMMS has been listed near the top of the category since 1994 when the magazine began publishing the rankings in its “America’s Best Graduate Schools” issue. Of note, UMMS is the only school in the top 50 that accepts no out-of-state students into its medical degree program. In its listing of top research schools, U.S. News ranked UMMS 48th. Also notable, the Department of Family Medicine & Community Health was 14th on the list of best medical school specialty rankings for family medicine.

“Once again, the University of Massachusetts Medical School is being recognized as a national leader in the area of primary care medical education, which is reflective of the medical school’s ethos of service and academic excellence, said University of Massachusetts President Jack M. Wilson. “In addition, the Medical School is ascending to new heights in the research rankings, reflecting the school’s great contributions and successes in the areas of RNA biology, stem cell biology, gene therapy, diabetes and cancer research. In a larger sense, these rankings illustrate what many of us have known for a long time—that the University of Massachusetts Medical School provides education, research and service that is of inestimable value to the commonwealth and its citizens.”

“We are so pleased that our school has been recognized for its rich tradition of, and successful commitment to, preparing the commonwealth’s next generation of outstanding primary care physicians, as well as for our research enterprise’s growing contributions to scientific knowledge and medical practice,” said Michael F. Collins, MD, Chancellor of the Medical School.

“Our top 10 ranking in primary care reflects our ongoing, mission-driven commitment to meet the workforce needs of the future,” said Terence R. Flotte, MD, Dean of the School of Medicine and Provost and Executive Deputy Chancellor for the University of Massachusetts Medical School. “Our commonwealth's leadership, in providing affordable health care for all, will create an increasing demand for primary care providers and new models for delivery of preventive medicine and primary care services. As the state’s only public medical school, we are uniquely suited to address those issues.”

The Medical School, which had accepted just 100 students per year, expanded the class of 2012 to include 114 students, to help meet the needs of the commonwealth. The class will again expand, to 125, starting with the class of 2013.

Beyond its core mission of distinction in medical education, UMMS has become an internationally recognized and respected research institute. UMMS also ranks near the top among public medical schools in the Northeast in the amount of funding awarded by the National Institutes of Health. Federal and private research grants and contracts at UMMS rose from about $2 million in 1977 to more than $193 million in 2009, making it one of the fastest-growing research institutions in the U.S.

“Our top 50 ranking reflects the rapid growth of basic, translational, and clinical research here, as exemplified by a stellar faculty who have received some of the most prestigious scientific awards in their fields, including the Nobel prize, the Lasker Award, and multiple Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigatorships,” said Dr. Flotte.

Graduates of UMMS are poised to excel in their medical careers. Members of the UMMS class of 2009 were accepted into some of the most competitive residency programs in the country, with 59 percent of graduates entering primary care (63 percent when including obstetrics/ gynecology and emergency medicine). The school’s mission, as defined upon its creation by the state legislature in 1962, focuses on providing highly trained primary care physicians to practice in underserved areas of the state. The Medical School welcomed its first class of 16 students in 1970. The current first-year class includes 114 students, all of whom are state residents; next year’s class will expand to 125. In addition, the Medical School accepts up to five additional students interested in pursuing an MD and PhD concurrently; such students may be state or non-state residents.

The U.S.News and World Report rankings of the nation’s 129 accredited medical schools and 25 accredited schools of osteopathic medicine are based on measures of academic quality which are weighted by reputation among faculty and residents, research activity, student selectivity and faculty resources.  To read more about the U.S. News & World Report rankings, log on to