Dignity Health | hello Healthy | Spring 2019

HelloHealthy | Spring 2019 7 Expanding our scope The residency programs at St. Joseph’s will eventually train doctors in a dozen different fields: ●  ● Anesthesiology ●  ● Emergency medicine ●  ● Family medicine ●  ● General surgery ●  ● Internal medicine ●  ● Interventional radiology ●  ● Obstetrics-gynecology ●  ● Orthopedic surgery ●  ● Psychiatry ●  ● Thoracic surgery ●  ● Transitional year (required to qualify for many specialties) ●  ● Urology “This is just the beginning of a crucial new undertaking to expand our residency training.” —DonaldWiley, President and CEO at St. Joseph’sMedical Center St. Joseph’s yearly, making it one of the largest and most complex graduate medical education programs in Northern California. Helping local residents Residency programs do more than prepare the next generation of doctors, as important as that is. They also benefit local communities. “And a key reason why is that as many as half of all residents go on to practice within 50 miles of where they trained,” says Kenneth Scott Whitlow, DO, FAAEM, director of Academic Affairs and designated institutional officer at St. Joseph’s. What’s more, when selecting applicants, one criterion is to choose doctors in training who, along with being extremely gifted, have California roots. Of this year’s 15 residents, nine are California natives. Those ties raise the chances of them settling permanently here. That staying power is crucial for the Central Valley, where both primary care physicians and specialists are in chronically short supply. Along with retaining doctors at the start of their careers, residency programs attract already established physicians. The programs are a magnet for highly skilled doctors versed in the latest technologies and treatments who are eager to share their expertise and train residents. And they will relocate to do so. While resident training at St. Joseph’s is still new, it is already attracting a pool of exceptional physicians. A case in point: the emergency department is now fully staffed with experienced, board- certified emergency physicians. In short, St. Joseph’s is poised to become a sorely needed, large regional teaching facility in the Central Valley. And that has benefits even beyond bringing doctors in diverse specialties, such as psychiatry and urology, to the area. “Not only will we be able to greatly expand the scope of the services we offer, we hope to significantly improve patient care,” Dr. Whitlow emphasizes. Research shows, for example, that teaching hospitals overall have patient outcomes that are as much as 35 percent better than nonteaching hospitals. That’s yet another powerful reason St. Joseph’s is fully committed to investing in resident training. doctors