MedWatch- CCMH’s 1st class resident physicians set to graduate from Medwatch 7 KSWO on Vimeo.

LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- Comanche County Memorial Hospital’s first class of Resident Physicians will graduate this month from the Family Medicine Program, and in just 6 short months, the Residents in the Emergency Medicine program will graduate too.

The program started back in 2014.

“We have 16 E.R. resident physicians, and 12 family medicine resident physicians,” said Sharon Smith, the GME Administrator.

A resident is a physician who has successfully completed their doctorate degree. CCMH offers 2 residency programs, Emergency Medicine which takes 4 years, or Family Medicine program which is 3 years.

“It’s been quite a journey. It’s really kind of exciting to see that first graduate. It’s just a really neat feeling.” Sharon Smith, is the Graduate Medical Education Administrator, and says the staff at CCMH enjoys teaching and mentoring the residents. “It’s like a little community and that’s their children, and they’re just helping to grow them up. And one day maybe work with them as a colleague in a practice.”

Dr. Moncy Varkey is the associate program director, and he says he is very proud of their program, and the Residents who will be graduating.

“I love it here. I think the reason that I love it here, is that the focus here is so much on the residents and their education. They really get exposure to a lot of cool stuff that they see here. Patients come here with some interesting diseases, and they get to treat those patients. And they become better physicians because of it,” explained Dr. Varkey.

While the program is affiliated with Oklahoma State University, they take medical school graduates from all over. Smith says though it is helpful when the residents decide to stay with them after they graduate.

“The hope is that you will grow physicians right here in our community that want to stay here. And often times, physicians gravitate to a place where there is family where they have ties,” said Smith.

Dr. Alexander Torres, one of the resident physicians in the emergency medicine program, will graduate in December. He will be moving on to do a fellowship in New Jersey, but he says he is very happy with his training here.

“It’s been a great three years. I learned a lot. I work now moonlighting all over the state of Oklahoma, and this place definitely prepared me to work anywhere.” Dr. Torres says one of the reasons he chose CCMH, was because of how much exposure he would get while training.
“We get an exceptional amount of procedures here at this facility. Again, being the largest facility here in SWOK, we do get first-hand experience here,” explained Dr. Torres.

“Big hospitals, the one downfall is that there are multiple residencies. There’s an OB, ER, IM, FM, and then there’s specialists and fellowships. The good thing here is that let’s just say we don’t have OB here, they get to do all the first-hand deliveries. Because there is no IM residency, there the one dealing with the patient up there. Because we don’t have geriatrics, they have first-hand exposure in the nursing homes and assisting living facilities. So again, it’s about first-hand experience,” Dr. Varkey explained.

After the Resident Physicians graduate this month and in December, they will get 4 new medical school graduates in each residency.

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