Eau Claire – Prevea Health, HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital, the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health (UW SMPH) and the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), are pleased to announce a collaborative effort to keep the Eau Claire Family Medicine Residency Program (ECFMRP) in the Chippewa Valley.

The ECFMRP, established by UW SMPH in 1975, is a three-year program that trains family medicine physicians at clinics in Eau Claire and Augusta. Its presence in the Chippewa Valley addresses the need for primary care physicians in rural communities throughout the region.

“As the originator of the Eau Claire residency program, we are thrilled that the program will continue on a stable footing with the support of multiple partners in education and patient care,” said Dr. Robert Golden, UW SMPH dean. “Primary-care residencies provide great value to the state and we’re pleased at the level of local commitment and collaboration that is now associated with this program.”

Effective July 1, 2017, ECFMRP will be operated by Prevea Health and HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital, in conjunction with UW SMPH (the long-time sponsor of the ECFMRP) and MCW. The four organizations have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) outlining a collaborative effort to transition the program from an academic program sponsored by UW SMPH to a community-based program sponsored by Prevea Health and HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital.

“Prevea Health is incredibly honored to become part of the Eau Claire Family Medicine Residency Program and to help ensure it stays a part of the Chippewa Valley community for many years to come,” said Dr. Ashok Rai, Prevea Health president and CEO.

“MCW is committed to providing graduate medical education opportunities to train the next generation of physicians who will practice in Wisconsin. We are fortunate to have such great partners who share and support this vision, as evidenced by the recently signed Memorandum of Understanding,” said Joseph E. Kerschner, MD, executive vice president of MCW and dean of the school of medicine.

As a result of the transition on July 1, 2017, the UW SMPH clinics in Augusta and Eau Claire will become Prevea health centers which will continue to host residents and provide family medicine services within each community. Eau Claire Family Medicine Residency Program residents will also continue to receive valuable training at HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital.

“There continues to be a need in Wisconsin as well as across the country for primary care physicians,” said Julie Manas, President and CEO of HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital. “Being a proactive part of the solution to this shortage is important and will benefit our community now and into the future.”

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