SULPHER SPRINGS, Texas (KETK) – CHRISTUS Mother Frances Sulphur Springs announced that it is partnering with the Texas A&M School of Medicine as a part of its rural health initiative.
According to a release from CHRISTUS, the partnership is meant to address the lack of accessibility to healthcare for many rural citizens by exposing medical students to practicing health in rural areas.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for both our hospital and our community and when Texas A&M approached us, we jumped at the possibility,” said Paul Harvey, president of CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital Sulphur Springs. “For us to be able to bring in young, motivated students who have a desire to work in rural areas is an opportunity we are excited about.”
CHRISTUS said that Texas A&M’s rural medicine program started in 2019, looking to ensure that rural communities had access to innovative healthcare and to address the rural provider shortage.
According to the statement, CHRISTUS will be hosting A&M medical students for one-week and two-week rotations throughout their hospital and clinics.
“Our program has been a tremendous success since we have launched it, and we have gotten great feedback from our medical students,” said Curtis Donaldson, director of rural medicine outreach at Texas A&M. “Our students are coming back and are telling us that rural health care is something they want to do and start addressing the shortage.
The rural medicine program also reportedly includes local school districts to create awareness of health care opportunities in their communities.
“Good health care is vital to ensuring the health of our communities and to control escalating health care costs” said Dr. John McDonald, chair of CHRISTUS Health Academic Institute. “We hope that this experience and partnership with Texas A&M will expose more students to the joys and rewards of living in a rural community and caring for the healthcare needs of the community.”