LONGVIEW, Texas (KETK)- Texas A&M University College of Medicine announced on Wednesday they will partner with the CHRISTUS Good Shepherd Internal Medicine Residency program in Longview.
“Recruiting new doctors and training the best in the country is a privilege. Today’s announcement is historic for our community,” said Chris Glenney, FACHE, Senior Vice President – Group Operations for CHRISTUS Health Northeast Texas. “We are proud to join together with one of the best academic institutions in health care because this community deserves the best. This partnership allows us to continue our journey to attract and develop the most highly-qualified, talented clinicians to come to Northeast Texas and will only build upon our excellent medical community.”
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) also gave the greenlight to move the CHRISTUS Good Shepherd Internal Medicine Residency sponsorship from the University of Texas at Tyler to CHRISTUS Health.
“This collaboration is the next step in a new beginning for the CHRISTUS program,” said John C. McDonald, DO, FACOI; Chair, Academic Institute with CHRISTUS Health. “By controlling our own destiny as sponsor and partnering with Texas A&M, I believe we can improve all of our undergraduate medical education and graduate medical education programs. We will be able to grow and develop even more outstanding physicians, and will continue to play an integral role in strengthening the medical community of Texas – and beyond.”
CHRISTUS leaders mentioned it will be an honor for them to train future doctors.
“The new affiliation with Texas A&M College of Medicine will only strengthen this legacy program and ensure we continue to attract the most talented residents from around the country,” said Todd Hancock, CHRISTUS Good Shepherd Health System President and Chief Executive Officer.
Academic officials also reacted positively to the modifications of the medical program.
“Physicians from some of the most prestigious medical schools and programs around the globe come to Longview to train as part of this program,” said Jennifer Reemtsma, MEd, Director – Academics, CHRISTUS Health. “These changes and partnerships allow the program to operate more effectively. Patients will still get the same high level of care. This program is already excellent, and we look forward to its future growth.”
Mike Finley, a system medical director for CHRISTUS Health, is excited about the future of the initiative.
“The best should be able to train the best,” he said.
Finley believes that all 36 internal medicine residents in the current program and others to join in the future will benefit from the change. “These young physicians come to work every day with a passion and a belief that the patients should come first.”
After partnering with Texas A&M University, the CHRISTUS residency program will expand from its locations in Corpus Christi and San Antonio. This will create opportunities for the CHRISTUS community.
“Partnering with Texas A&M for academic support gives us many resources for residents and students, faculty development, medical research and program growth. It will enhance the partnership we have with Texas A&M and our other residency programs. We are excited to provide these opportunities for this program as it continues to provide education for residents and medical students in Longview and the CHRISTUS East Texas Region,” said Finley.
Doctors have to go through a residency program to receive training after medical school.
Dr. Sam Bagchi, CHRISTUS Health’s Chief Clinical Officer, said the partnership with Texas A&M Health Science Center will allow doctors to provide better care.
“The alliance of CHRISTUS Health and Texas A&M ensures that the families in Longview, Marshall and all of Northeast Texas will have access to a new level of expertise,” said Dr. Bagchi. “Internal medicine residencies are three years long, and require immense dedication. We are proud of our programs and what they have come to offer.”
Texas A&M leaders added that the new residency program will benefit Texans.
“We are excited to have CHRISTUS Good Shepherd Internal Medicine Residency program as our newest affiliate,” said Amy L. Waer, MD, FACS, Jean and Tom McMullin Endowed Deanship, Texas A&M College of Medicine. “We have a shared mission of training caring, competent and compassionate physicians to serve the people of Texas and beyond.”
Moreover, after residents complete their program they may choose to become primary care doctors or continue to get more training in sub-specialties such as cardiology, infectious disease, endocrinology and more.