At Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific-Northwest (WesternU COMP-Northwest), students are expected to be innovative, resilient, and well-prepared for a future in the medical profession. They are committed to training future compassionate physicians who embrace lifelong learning, evidence-based research, and a whole patient approach to treatment. With such high expectations, many students will find it hard to keep up with the rigorous coursework. When a student fails to complete a course, exam, or clinical, they could find themselves being offered a remediation plan, facing disciplinary action, or being referred for dismissal from the program altogether.
Know someone going through this right now? An attorney-advisor can help them navigate the complexities of these proceedings, guaranteeing them the best possible outcome for their case. Call Lento Law Firm today.
Academic and Professional Conduct for Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific-Northwest
Like most schools in the United States, students are provided with a code of conduct at the beginning of the school year. Students are supposed to familiarize themselves with this code to ensure they do not inadvertently violate its rules. Violators will face harsh hearings for disciplinary action, including dismissal hearings. At WesternU COMP-Northwest, these rules cover both academic performance and professional behaviors, such as:
- Building mutual trust and respect with one another, instructors, and patients
- Refraining from bribing colleagues, faculty, staff, or patients to get a more favorable outcome in the situation at hand
- Maintaining patient confidentiality and HIPAA guidelines
- Presenting themselves in a professional manner, including the clothes they wear
- Refraining from providing patient care without a supervising physician
- Following the Drug-Free Workplace policy
- Abstaining from committing a Title IX violation or participating in sexual harassment or sexual misconduct
If a student violates any of these rules, they will be referred to the Student Performance Committee (SPC) to determine whether disciplinary action is necessary. Working with an attorney-advisor from the moment you learn of these actions can help ensure you do not suffer from any unnecessary consequences.
Remediation at Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific - Northwest
In medical school, students are evaluated on their academic and professional performance at the end of every academic year. If the SPC at WesternU COMP-Northwest finds that a student is truly struggling to pass their courses, exams, or clinicals, they will create a remediation plan for them. Remediation plans should be completed successfully in the summer between academic years. The hope is that with the extra attempt, the student will pass and be able to rejoin their cohort in the fall.
In some cases, students are unable to fulfill this obligation successfully. When this happens, they will not be able to rejoin their cohort and will be referred for dismissal. There are other cases where medical schools have failed to offer students a remediation plan and just sent them straight to a dismissal hearing. If you feel like you should have been offered a remediation plan, or you are having a hard time passing one that was provided, an attorney-advisor will advocate with the school for your due process rights to be met.
Dismissal Procedures for Medical Students at Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific-Northwest
Students at WesternU COMP-Northwest can be referred for dismissal for several reasons, including:
- Failing one or more of the assessment week exams even after being allowed to retake them
- Failing a repeated rotation
- Failing two different rotations
- Failing the COMLEX (Levels 1, 2CE, or 2PE) three times
- Violating the code of conduct
When students at WesternU COMP-Northwest are referred for dismissal, they will have the opportunity to defend themselves in front of the SPC. During this hearing, you can present evidence and testimony to best express your side of the story. When you have finished, the SPC will decide whether or not dismissal is appropriate.
Appeal a Decision at Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific-Northwest
It is important to remember that you have the right to appeal any decision made by the SPC. Their decision will include specific instructions for appeal, but generally, an appeal must be made within a few days and include the exact grounds the appeal is being made on. Typically, these grounds include:
- A procedural error affected the outcome of the case
- A bias on behalf of the SPC towards the student affected the outcome of the case
- There is new evidence available that will affect the decision
Once the appeal has been received, a decision-maker will review it and decide if the SPC's decision should be upheld, amended, or stricken from the record completely. Whatever they decide, it is most likely final and cannot be appealed further.
Now, if the idea of filing an appeal is overwhelming, reach out to Lento Law Firm for help. Appeals are an incredible part of the defense process and your last chance to secure your spot in medical school.
How an Experienced Attorney-Advisor Can Help
Going to medical school is a dream come true for most students. You have worked so hard, taken all the tests, written exceptional essays, and now you're here. You never imagine your dream of becoming a medical professional being cut short. And you definitely do not consider how the consequences of your actions now can affect your future prospects in the medical field. For instance, if you are found responsible in a hearing and suspended or dismissed from the program, the punishment will be noted on your final transcript. If you decide to pursue your education elsewhere or are going to apply for a post-graduate fellowship, these punishments can hinder your efforts because you will have to explain them on every application and in every admissions interview.
Attorney Joseph D. Lento and Lento Law Firm understand both federal and state laws, as well as the policies and procedures that govern your Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific-Northwest. They know how to best present your case so that you can effectively defend yourself. Call 888-535-3686 today or schedule a consultation online.