F or years it has been difficult for Charlevoix Area Hospital to recruit young physicians out of school, but they are hoping a new Michigan State University rural medicine residency program will help draw interest to smaller communities.
" It gives the student the opportunity and the chance to really experience what it's like to work in a rural area, which is a real shortfall for us right now," CAH Chief Medical Officer Dr. Craig Boss said.
D r. Boss says most students in medical school do their residency at large metropolitan hospitals, which doesn't give them exposure to medical practices in small communities.
" We as a community hospital perhaps versus that of a medical center brings the ability for a student to experience one-on-one with physician in a community aspect where they can actually work one-on-one with patients as well as one-on-one with doctors to really get a full breadth of primary care expert," Dr. Boss said.
T he Michigan State rural community health program will pick a handful of students to test out this new program. These select students will spend half of the year working at Charlevoix Area Hospital, which provides different learning experiences than larger metropolitan facilities.
" So what they will see here is a little bit slower pace , a little more intensely personal care given to each patient ," CAH CEO Lyn Jenks said.
J enks is confident that this prog ra m will help draw more graduates to hospitals like hers and in the long term help fill some of the local employment gaps expected in the coming years.
" We will have a much better chance of retaining was already said they want to practice medicine in rural areas when they come here to do their training ," Jenks said.
T wo other area hospitals will offer the rural residency. M c L aren Northern Michigan and Alpena Regional Hospital will start taking students the same time Charlevoix Area Hospital does.