By Debbie Gregory.
The Military Family Care Residency Program brings together military physicians and allied medical personnel with their civilian counterparts to provide top-notch healthcare to their patients.
Each year, 42 residents go through the program, which lasts three years. Each class has 14 participants—eight military members and six civilians. To be accepted into the program, both military and civilian residents must graduate from medical school.
The program, which had been located at Scott Air Force Base, IL, is now located at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Belleville, IL. It is the only fully-integrated civilian-military family residency in the Air Force that combines a community-based and a military residency.
The concentration changes every month. Students are required to learn every specialty under Family Medicine in a short amount of time, making it an intensive learning program
Lt. Colonel Matthew Snyder, MFCRP military program director, said that the program is designed to offer students a “full scope” training method, meaning students are not specifically trained in family medicine.
“They are trained in everything,” said Snyder. “That way they can become the most valuable family medicine physicians the Air Force can produce.”
The program began in 1972 and was located at Scott Air Force Base. When the hospital on base closed down in 1996, the program moved to St. Elizabeth’s. Late next year, St. Elizabeth’s will be moving locations along with the residency clinic, but the residency program will remain the same.
The new location will allow more efficient patient care and will also be closer to Scott AFB, making it easier for most DOD beneficiaries to receive care, Snyder said.
“I have a great opportunity to not only shape future Air Force physicians but to also teach and have a direct impact on their education,” said Snyder.