Newsletter – January 2017

Posted on January 6, 2017 in Monthly Newsletters


Russell Maier – Residency Program Director

Happy New Year! One thing is certain in this New Year, and that’s change.  This year one of the changes will be the evolving faculty roles.  I’ve written before about round pegs in round holes – meaning all the faculty were family physicians at one site and they all did the same work – clinic, precepting residents, OB and Medicine call in the hospital, and curricular work.  Any physician could fill for another physician. Historically we also had one behavioralist – for about 20+ years, and at one site.  Over time this evolved to some faculty doing Medicine call only, some OB call only, some both and now a plethora of BHC’s – at two sites.

Currently we have 3 physician job offers out, with a fourth recently accepted.  In Ellensburg and Yakima the issue is not enough core academic faculty, but enough time to cover call, see patients, precept residents, and do academic work.  As you are well aware our biggest issue around access is capacity – a limited number of providers.  We hope this will be changing.  As we move forward we are working to add more clinical faculty.  The best examples we have are Regan Eberhart our Ellensburg BHC and Mark Bauer our NMC internist.  These two see patients work with the residents, but their primary job is patient care.  As part of that primary job, seeing patients, they also teach residents.  Clinical faculty do differ from  core faculty required by our accreditation agency.  It will mean different folks at different meetings – some are academically focused, some clinically focused.  But we are still one organization.

Everyone in our organization teaches – from Front Office to Billing, from Dental to the Nursing Homes.  Our residents value that teaching.  But as we grow our need for patient care delivery is increasing beyond our need for accreditation required core faculty.  This will be a good change for us in the New Year – enough providers to see patients and time for faculty to help train the next generation of physicians.

Russell Maier

Residency Program Director