Over 400 guests attended Sarasota Memorial Healthcare Foundation’s 7th annual “Women & Medicine” educational luncheon on March 29 at Michael’s on East. The program covered two important topics regarding primary care medicine. The first, “How to Be a Partner in Good Health” focused on making the most of your physician relationship. The second presentation was an introduction to the FSU Internal Medicine Residency Program at SMH, where the goal is to attract and train newly graduated physician residents, provide them an exceptional environment to complete their internal medicine training and encourage them to put down roots and establish practices in our community.
“The focus of the Women & Medicine luncheon continues to be on bringing women of our community educational topics in medicine and healthcare that are timely and relevant,” said Sarasota Memorial Healthcare Foundation president Mason Ayres. “One of the key topics was the importance of good communication with your primary care doctor, and how it can make a big difference in the quality of care you receive.”
Presentations were made by SMH physicians Wilhelmine Wiese-Rometsch, M.D., and Karen Hamad, M.D., who respectively serve as director and associate director of the internal medicine residency program at SMH. Dr. Wiese-Rometsch provided an overview of the future of primary care in Sarasota and emphasized the significance of bringing the internal residency program to our community. She also shared the positive impact the residency program is already having on the residents of the Newtown community. Dr. Hamad stressed the importance of having a meaningful relationship with your primary care physician and explained how it can make the difference between surviving and thriving.
“By 2025, the predicted shortage of primary care physicians in Florida will a reach a critical level,” said Sarasota Memorial Health Care System Chief Operating Officer Lorrie Liang. “We felt one of the best ways to offset this shortage and safeguard the quality of care in our community was to establish a residency program in Sarasota. Simply put, we’re growing our own.”
The FSU Internal Medicine Residency Program at SMH began in July 2017 with 13 newly graduated physicians. It will reach capacity at 39 resident physicians when its third class of 13 residents begin training this July. By 2020, the program will begin producing 13 new physicians each year with the training needed to establish their own practices in the community and beyond.