published on October 30, 2017 - 3:32 PM
Written by The Business Journal Staff

A grant by Kaiser Permanente has been made to address the Valley’s physician shortage by adding four more residents to Valley Health Team’s Family Medicine Residency program.

“We know physician shortages are hindering many residents from accessing the care they need,” said Debbie Hemker, RN, senior vice president and area manager at Kaiser Permanente. “The goal is to place these residents in underserved communities, providing residents with access to high-quality care.”

It’s estimated that up to 9,000 patients will be served by program residents during the two-year grant period. The $549,856 grant will mean that up to 12 residents will be in the Teaching Health Center-Graduate Medical Education program for the family medicine residency program by 2018. The grant will support the entire residency program, including attending physician time, resident salaries and training costs.

“We are so thrilled to be receiving the support from Kaiser Permanente Fresno, so we can expand our residency program,” said Soyla Reyna-Griffin, CEO at Valley Health Team. “This will help to alleviate the shortage of primary care providers in the communities we serve.”

The four new residents will join the current cohort of residents. Next year, four more residents will be added, bringing the total number of residents to 12.

Residents will be placed in clinical settings serving primarily underserved populations. Valley Health Team, a federally qualified health center, has clinics in communities throughout Fresno County offering patient-centered services in all areas of medicine including family practice, obstetrics and gynecology, and pediatrics.

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