June Newsletter 2018

Posted on May 31, 2018 in Monthly Newsletters, News


Russell Maier – Residency Program Director

Celebration. Reflection. Meaning.

We often wonder about our purpose, in life, at home, at work.  What impact do we have on the world?  One of my purposes here over the last 25 years has been to train new physicians for future generations.  Graduation this year marks a major milestone for the organization.

This class is our 25th graduating class.  It all began with Jude Page in 1994.  The sole graduate marking our first year.  Over the next 20 years we graduated about 6 residents per year.  For several years now we have been graduating 10 residents per year.  Where have all those graduates gone and what do they do? That would take the entire newsletter.  But I can try to summarize.

Where are they now? First and foremost, they take care of patients as family physicians. They do this around the country, and over the years around the world.  Many have stayed in Eastern Washington.  Many have returned to their home states.  A few have retired, and sadly a few, including our first graduate, have passed away.

Here are some facts and figures:

The first graduating class       1 residents

This year’s graduating class   10 residents

Total graduates                       156 (as of June 30th, plus 3 deceased)

Total in Washington State      82

Total in Eastern WA               45

Total in the Yakima Valley      35

The vast majority is the core of our healthcare system – they take care of patients on a daily basis.  Yet a number participate in parts of the system from Program Director of a Residency, Chief Medical Officer, Site Medical Directors, residency faculty, medical school faculty.  And they’ve had a huge impact on this valley.

The community interest in starting this program nearly 30 years ago was to help solve the primary care crisis – the lack of family medicine physicians in Central Washington.

When we look now, of all the family physicians working in the hospital our faculty and graduates are either all, or the majority of the active medical staff (admitting patients) ­- Regional 100% VMM 63%.  If we look at our graduates in Yakima County, population 250k, our former residents care for about 1/5th of the county’s population. Stay tune for the next 25 years to see the impact we’ll have on Kittitas County!

If you ever wonder if you have a long term impact, just look at our mission of service and education.  By educating residents you all have had an enormous long term impact on the service family physicians provide here in Central Washington. Every day your work at CHCW has an impact today, and a generation from now.


Russell Maier, MD

Program Director