St. Marys residents 2021

St. Mary's Health Care System and the Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership welcomed 12 new residents into their Internal Medicine Residency Program. (Photo courtesy/St. Mary's Health Care System)

On Monday, St. Mary’s Health Care System in Athens and the Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership released a press release highlighting their 12 new residents accepted into the Internal Medicine Residency Program. 

These residents come from various medical schools nationally and globally, holding Doctor of Medicine and Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degrees. 

Residency is a three-year program with increasing levels of independence and is the final stage in a medical school graduate’s internal medicine education, according to the press release. At the end of the three-year program, residents will take their licensure exam and either go into practice or continue training for a specialty.

The Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership and St. Mary's, the major participating site, collaborated on the Internal Medicine Residency Program. The program's objective is to bring Georgia's physician shortage to light and address it, according to the press release.

“Our Internal Medicine Residency Program offers a wide range of experiences,” said Dr. Lela Ward, the program director. “From critical care and inpatient units to a rural outpatient clinic, our residents have a diverse range of practice opportunities that will prepare them well as they further their careers.”

According to the press release, the Internal Medicine Residency Program is accredited to host up to 37 residents. They provide supervised inpatient care at St. Mary’s. In addition, third-year residents spend two months in a rural health care setting, providing inpatient care at St. Mary’s Good Samaritan Hospital in Greensboro.

“Being the site of the first medical residency program in Northeast Georgia continues to be a tremendous honor for St. Mary’s,” said Dr. Jason Smith, St. Mary’s chief medical officer. “Residents bring new energy and enthusiasm into our clinical areas. At the same time, working with these new physicians is exciting for our medical staff. We welcome our sixth class of residents and are looking forward to working side-by-side with them over the next three years to further raise the bar for clinical excellence at St. Mary’s and across Northeast Georgia.”

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