Orange Park Medical Center recently celebrated their newest residents at their Hail and Farewell Event. The annual event celebrates all incoming and graduating residents of their Graduate Medical Education (GME) Program. As the demand for physicians continues to grow faster than the supply, the 32 new residents celebrated are only a small piece of what Orange Park Medical Center is doing to close the physician shortage gap in our future.

Orange Park Medical Center's residency program includes physicians in Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Dermatology and a Transitional Year Program which focuses on subspecialties. The programs vary from 1-4 years in length. During their time at Orange Park Medical Center the residents see patients both in the hospital and in a clinic setting, at one of Orange Park Medical Center's partner facilities. The partner facilities include Palms Medical Group and Park Avenue Dermatology. All residents are licensed physicians and practice under a supervisor attending.

"Our residency program allows us to offer brand new sets of eyes coming right out of medical school. They're excited to learn and eager to provide the best care possible," said Graduate Medical Education Director Gretchen Holmes, PhD.

70% of residents tend to stay within the community of their residency program. With a severe physician shortage on the rise, starting in 2020, Orange Park Medical Center's plan is to continue the recruitment of skilled physicians to the Clay County area to assist in the long term need.

The Orange Park Medical Center residency program currently has 50 residents with an additional 15 starting next July. The hospital is now considering additional programs for the future which they anticipate will bring their residency population to 100 residents by the year 2020.

The first class of GME residents will be completing their program on July 1st, 2018.