Banner Staff Report
LEWISBURG -- The West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM), Logan Regional Medical Center (LRMC), and Williamson Memorial Hospital recently announced a collaboration for the development of a rural, osteopathic primary care residency program.
The program would ultimately be expanded to provide resident community teaching sites in other underserved rural areas of southern West Virginia. When completed, the program will train up to 18 residents each year.
"This is a wonderful opportunity to utilize this residency program in order to provide more access to primary care for rural communities," says Michael Adelman, DO, vice president for Academic Affairs and dean for WVSOM. "We are excited to expand our relationship with both of these hospitals."
Dino Beckett, DO, a native of Williamson and a graduate of WVSOM, believes the announcement means good things for southern West Virginia.
"I am extremely pleased with the development of a primary care residency program in southern West Virginia. WVSOM is nationally known as a top ten medical program, so having the students and residents train at Williamson Memorial in Mingo County is an excellent opportunity to advance the healthcare of our region," Dr. Beckett said.
"This collaborative effort will also help the recruitment and retention of primary care physicians in Southern West Virginia," adds Lorenzo Pence, DO, associate dean for Graduate Medical Education for WVSOM.
Kevin Fowler, CEO of LRMC, believes the collaboration will benefit the patients served by his hospital.
"The medical staff of Logan Regional Medical Center looks forward to developing a strong medical student and residency training program in conjunction with the West Virginia Osteopathic School of Medicine to more completely provide for the healthcare needs of Southwestern West Virginia," Fowler said. "Several years ago, this hospital was fortunate to have had a significant medical training program with WVSOM. We are extremely proud to have the opportunity to work with the Osteopathic School again as we build a new training program that will help us address the shortage of physicians in our area and throughout the state."
Todd Hubler, CEO of Williamson Memorial Hospital, also noted the benefits of the partnership.
"Williamson Memorial Hospital is proud to be a partner in the osteopathic rural medicine residency program. We believe the collaborative effort with WVSOM will increase access to healthcare in several communities in Southern West Virginia," Hubler said. "This effort will provide a positive impact on the health of our communities along with acting as a stimulus for economic growth. We are fortunate and excited to be part of a mission that benefits the common good of Southern West Virginia."
WVSOM, an award-winning medical school located in southeastern West Virginia, offers a nationally ranked medical education program with a dose of small town charm. WVSOM is recognized worldwide for its efforts in rural, family, and primary care medicine. The college has been recognized for a decade of excellence by U.S. News & World Report magazine, ranking as one of the nation"s best medical schools for ten consecutive years. Visit WVSOM online at www.wvsom.edu.