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OHSU Sends Out 100th Student To Reedsport Medical Center

A Reedsport, Ore., family health care center is hosting  its 100th Oregon Health & Science University medical student.

Karli Edholm begins her rural rotation Monday, May 1, and will continue through Friday, June 2,  at Dunes Family Health Care, P.C. She will be working under the supervision of Dale Harris, M.D.

"We are pleased at Dunes Family Health Care to host our 100th OHSU third-year student for the rural practice rotation. The students are bright, inquisitive and always make me consider how best to manage illness.  I think the students gain insight into how the principles they learn in the academic setting can be applied to care in the outlying areas.  I hope we can be a positive influence and aid in sustaining the satisfaction that accrues from working in the health care field," Harris said.

"I've been looking forward to this rural rotation since I started medical school.  In talking to other students who have been in rural areas, I believe it will be a great opportunity to be part of that community and to learn about rural care," said Edholm, 25. She is from the very urban Long Beach, California.

Since 1992 the OHSU Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) program has provided all OHSU School of Medicine students with a required third-year clinical experience in rural Oregon communities. A total of 1,326 medical students have been sent to rural locations. Throughout the country, there is a shortage of health care providers in rural areas. The OHSU rural rotation program started as a way to introduce medical students to the possibility of practicing in a rural area.  Many small communities in Oregon now have practicing physicians whose career choice was influenced by their medical student rotation in a rural area.

"The goal of the AHEC Rural Community Health Clerkship is to increase the connections between OHSU and the rest of Oregon, and to spread the benefits of an academic health center like OHSU into our rural communities. Requiring our students to spend part of their education in rural Oregon is one way we prepare them for future practice," said Lisa Dodson, M.D., assistant professor of family medicine, OHSU School of Medicine; deputy director of the Area Health Education Program, and director of Rural Community Health Clerkship.

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