'Here for the service': Entire graduating RiverStone resident class to practice in Montana
|June 14, 2015||View for printing|
When the eight physicians in RiverStone Health's Montana Family Medicine Residency program's 18th class graduate later this month and move into their own practices, it'll be one of the first times that every member does so in Montana.
"We're all staying, and that is a unique opportunity," said Dr. Stephanie Thomas, a resident physician graduating from the program. "The entire mission of this is to recruit physicians to Montana."
By Zach Benoit
As you may know, approx. 70% of previous Riverstone classes have stayed in MT. Somewhat unfortunately, many chose to stay in the larger population centers. In any case National data continues to show that approx. 50% of all residency graduates practice within 100 miles of where they complete their residencies. We hope to see similar stats when our first graduating class here in Western Montana occurs next year and when the new Internal Medicine Residency in Billings begins to graduate residents in 2017.
From a workforce point of view, the more important stat is where they are 5 years out from residency. Hats off to Riverstone a terrific accomplishment this year and for keeping so many in the state in previous years. The people of Montana deserve access to well-trained primary care docs (currently 52/56 MT counties remain underserved.) With three primary care residency training programs now here in the state, we may finally be able to make a meaningful impact on these shortages.
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