Valley Children’s Hospital announced its first class of pediatric residents on Friday.
The 13 medical students will arrive at the hospital in June to begin their three-year pediatric residency program.
Valley Children’s collaborated with Stanford University School of Medicine to develop the new residency program at the hospital in Madera County.
Of the 13 residents, four grew up in Central California, and others have connections to the region. For example: Devon Goossen received her undergraduate degree at Fresno State; Erica Neuhaus received her undergraduate degree at the University of California at Merced; Cristina Vargas grew up in Stockton; and Daniel Ebbs used to be a paramedic in Madera.
Dr. Jolie Limón, chief of pediatrics and the executive director of medical education, said it was no accident that so many of the residents have Valley roots.
Our goal really is to train excellent clinicians, but also to take that a step higher and really train advocates and leaders who will hopefully stay with us.
Dr. Jolie Limón, Valley Children’s Hospital
The recruitment was very much done “in the spirit of attracting locals back home to be part of our team and to serve the kids of the Central Valley and to provide access to our very underserved area,” she said.
Limón said the recruitment process was a team effort that included pediatric specialists, nurses, social workers and pharmacists who interviewed more than 130 candidates from around the country who had applied for the 13 residency slots.
The residents will spend the bulk of the three years at Valley Children’s Hospital or its primary-care sites in the Valley. They will also have rotations at Saint Agnes Medical Center and Kaiser Permanente-Fresno, Limón said.
The residents will have a two-month rotation at Stanford in Palo Alto during their first year. Stanford residents will also rotate at Valley Children’s emergency department.
“Our goal really is to train excellent clinicians, but also to take that a step higher and really train advocates and leaders who will hopefully stay with us,” Limón said.
Limón said the residency program, while affiliated with Stanford, was homegrown and will be overseen and operated by Valley Children’s Hospital. The hospital has full academic and financial responsibility for the graduate medical education. The residency program is nationally accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, a nonprofit council that oversees graduate medical training programs at hospitals.
Valley Children’s also will continue to serve as a teaching site for more than 210 residents and medical students in a dozen other programs, including those based at Kaweah Delta Health Care District in Visalia, Mercy Medical Center in Merced and Clinica Sierra Vista in Fresno. Valley Children’s also will continue to participate in the UCSF Fresno residency program.
Also this week, UCSF Fresno announced it had recruited another group of about 100 residents who will start their training this summer. The University of California at San Francisco has been training residents in the Valley for 40 years.
This week, Lori Weichenthal, assistant dean of graduate medical education at UCSF Fresno, said: “The caliber of medical school graduates applying to and matching with UCSF Fresno along with our ongoing successful match results speak to the outstanding quality of our medical education program. The opportunity to learn from the finest faculty physicians, the range of clinical settings, diversity of patient populations and clinical cases make UCSF Fresno a top-notch training program.”
The UCSF Fresno residency programs that participated in the National Resident Marching Program received 5,165 applications and conducted 1,181 interviews for 79 positions, UCSF Fresno said.
UCSF Fresno fellowship programs that took part in the October/December matches received nearly 700 applications and conducted nearly 100 interviews for 16 positions. The remaining programs filled available positions through another matching service or through interviews. UCSF Fresno currently offers residency training in eight specialties and fellowship training in 17 subspecialties.