MISSOULA – The University of Montana-sponsored Family Medicine Residency of Western Montana has expanded its resident physician medical services to Partnership Health Center’s Seeley Lake Clinic.
The expanded service was made possible by a federal grant through the Health Resources & Services Administration. The residency program is one of 20 organizations nationally to receive the HRSA grant, with the goal of increasing rural training and exposure for resident physicians specializing in family medicine and primary care.
Training in rural areas is paramount to the FMRWM mission to train clinically competent physicians to practice in rural and underserved areas of Montana. According to a 2016 analysis by the University of Washington, resident physicians training in rural and underserved areas are more likely to continue practicing in those areas. Fifty-two of 56 counties in Montana are currently designated as primary care shortage areas.
The first resident physician to train at Seeley Lake is third-year resident Dr. Zach Carlson. He is one of three residents who will share patient duties at the Seeley Lake Clinic this academic year. Dr. Nick Zakovich, a third-year resident and Dr. Jacqueline Ordemann, a second-year resident, also will provide services at the clinic.
“I was excited for the opportunity to rotate to Seeley Lake because of the potential for more acute visits, since unlike Missoula there are no urgent care clinics or emergency rooms nearby to handle these needs,” Carlson said. “I’m happy to report my first clinic session exceeded this expectation. Taking care of patients with acute concerns in an area with limited resources is great practice for a potential future job in a rural area, and I look forward to more experiences going forward to better prepare me for my future practice.”
Interested residents submitted an application for consideration for the Seeley Lake position. Three residents were chosen and will continue providing services through the 2021-22 academic year. FMRWM will take applications each year to replace graduating residents. Program managers also expect to extend the rural continuity clinic program to Kalispell track residents in the coming year.
FMRWM is a three-year family medicine residency program based in Missoula with a track in Kalispell. Each year the program recruits 10 first-year residents and graduates 10 third-year residents. At any given time, there are 24 residents located in Missoula and six located in Kalispell.
Missoula residents complete their continuity clinic at Partnership Health Center, and Kalispell residents complete their continuity clinic at Greater Valley Health Center. FMRWM is part of the University of Washington Family Medicine Residency Network and is sponsored by Providence St. Patrick Hospital and Community Medical Center in Missoula and Logan Health in Kalispell.
Contact: Dr. Darin Bell, assistant director for rural education, 406-258-4124, email@example.com.