Development of the Phoenix Biomedical Campus (PBC)

Explore the history and development process of the PBC.

Addressing healthcare shortages

Physical therapists, physician assistants, and other healthcare professionals are in high demand, but there is a critical labor shortage. According to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for physical therapists will increase by about 30 percent in the next five years, and the demand for physician assistants will increase 39 percent.

Northern Arizona University recognizes that it has a responsibility to address the public need for healthcare. As a result, Northern Arizona University and the University of Arizona ultimately worked together for much of the past decade to leverage the Phoenix Biomedical Campus (PBC) in service of the citizens of Arizona and the wider world.

The goal is to develop collaborative healthcare and science programs that mimic real-world practice in hospitals, clinics, and labs.

A new foundation

In 2010, the Arizona Board of Regents approved construction of the $136 million Health Sciences Education Building at the PBC. This provided Northern Arizona University the opportunity to expand its allied health programs.

In the fall of 2012, Northern Arizona University opened the physician assistant and doctor of physical therapy programs at the PBC.  Twenty-five students will join the inaugural class of the physician assistant program.  The physical therapy program admitted 24 students for fall.

Northern Arizona University is currently developing the first occupational therapy doctoral program in the state, with the inaugural class expected to begin in the fall of 2014.