For more than 60 years, Community Medical Center (CMC) has been Ocean County’s trusted acute-care hospital offering state-of-the-art health and wellness services, the latest in medical technology and a highly skilled staff dedicated to the health and well-being of its patients.
As CMC began its journey to become an academic medical center, its leadership team met with the Grunin Foundation to discuss the plans. The Rutgers Health/CMC Graduate Medical Education program aligned with the Grunin Foundation’s mission, funding pillars and equity commitments, and the Foundation pledged its support.
About the Program
In 2020, Rutgers Health became the educational sponsor for all residency and fellowship physician training programs within Rutgers and RWJBarnabas Health. This was a significant achievement for the Rutgers and RWJBarnabas Health relationship, as they continued to build New Jersey’s premier integrated academic health system.
During the summer of 2021, the hospital welcomed its first residents: 12 in Internal Medicine, 12 in Emergency Medicine and three in Podiatry. CMC will introduce the Surgery Residency Program in July of 2022 with the Transitional Year Program following in 2023, bringing more trainees to the hospital. The possibilities for the residents are endless, as there are 13 hospitals and two medical schools within the Rutgers Health sponsorship. If CMC does not offer a specific rotation, the residents have vast opportunities within the Rutgers and RWJBarnabas Health systems.
Emergency Medicine Residency Program
The Emergency Medicine Residency Program includes 12 residents a year for three years. This is a dynamic training program that will prepare residents for a career in Emergency Medicine. The residents receive outstanding clinical experience through CMC’s talented and diverse Core Faculty and their Emergency Department volume of approximately 75,000 high acuity patients per year. Residents will work with patients seeking help for a large variety of disease processes and pathology.
There is also some fun and exciting news to share about the Emergency Residency Program. The New Jersey Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians (NJ-ACEP) is honoring one of the CMC Emergency Medicine Residents as Resident of the Year. This is the first time in New Jersey that a first-year resident is receiving this honor. The resident was chosen based on the amount of research he has done, patient care compliments and his bedside manner.
The residents also participated in a national Jeopardy-style competition and won! While it is something fun for them to do as a group, it’s also a sign of their growing educational fortitude.
Internal Medical Residency Program
The Internal Medicine Residency Program includes 12 residents a year for three years. All residents agree that their favorite rotation is intensive care. They are gaining much experience with complicated procedures and learning compassionate bedside manner with patients who are extremely sick. They are also working with families who have to speak on behalf of patients who are too sick to speak for themselves.
As part of the Internal Medicine Residency, residents do a lot of inpatient work and consult with various specialists like neurologists, geriatricians, cardiologists and gastroenterologists. They also take time to work at the Internal Medicine Faculty Practice, CMC’s Continuity Clinic. Run by residents and faculty, the clinic is focused on those who are underinsured, in between insurances or on Medicaid in our community. CMC’s clinic makes it easy to get appointments and patients will see a resident as well an attending physician. It is called a continuity clinic because the resident who treats the patient will continue their care on the medical teaching services side in the hospital. Patients see the same providers throughout their care journey.
The clinic is also focusing its care on the LGBTQIA+ community. Many in the LGBTQIA+ community opt for treatment outside of Ocean County and CMC’s aims to change that. They are starting a Proud Clinic at the Internal Medicine Faculty Practice to ensure there is a safe, all-inclusive space for the LGBTQIA+ community to receive their primary care. Starting with two afternoons per month, the Pride Clinic will see only LGBTQIA+ patients on those specific days. If they need further treatment such as gender affirming care or surgery, CMC will assist in scheduling consults at other locations within the system. Residents and attending physicians will be taking very specific classes and coursework to assure they can best help LGBTQIA+ patients.
Podiatry Residency Program
The podiatry program includes three residents per year for three years. The residents are thriving and have been busy with research and performing surgeries. One of the residents was selected to present his research on interdisciplinary wound healing at a national conference.
Ending racism, working on healthcare disparities and increasing those who are underrepresented in medicine (URIM) are some of the biggest challenges. CMC has built its residency program with this in mind and is doing implicit bias training with residents. To help bring those who are underrepresented in medicine into the GME program, CMC has a wonderful scholarship award that is given to medical students that qualify as URIM. Medical students who receive this scholarship are housed in Ocean County while working. It increases the percentages of URIM who might come and continue their career here as a doctor. In fact, this year, CMC’s first Diversity Student Scholar was accepted into the Emergency Medicine Class of 2025!
Another big challenge is finding housing within a resident’s budget, especially in the summer as rentals increase in price. CMC is always looking to support innovative ways to help residents find housing so they can work and live in Ocean County with the hopes of one day becoming a permanent resident (no pun intended) and doctor in our community.
Starting in July, CMC will have a General Surgery Residency, directed by a vascular surgeon with a general surgeon as associate program director. This provides a great opportunity for the residents to get an understanding of what it is like to be both a specialty surgeon as well as a general surgeon.
Also newly approved is the Transitional Year Program, where residents seeking specializations like ophthalmology and radiation oncology, stay at CMC for one year before they go off into more specialized training. The program will start with eight residents, with plans to increase to sixteen. Residents will be rotating on the OBGYN, Internal Medicine, and Emergency Medicine services to gain broad knowledge before they leave to concentrate in another specialty.
To stay up-to-date with the Rutgers Health/CMC Graduate Medical Education programs, visit Community Medical Center’s website.
November 29th, 2022
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