RURAL-PRIME: TRAINING CALIFORNIA'S FUTURE PHYSICIANS TO MEET THE NEEDS OF RURAL COMMUNITIES
With a founding mission that emphasizes community service, UC Davis School of Medicine recently launched a program to increase health-care access for underserved populations living in rural areas.
Called "Rural-PRIME," this unique program is designed to train the best and the brightest students for a fulfilling career in rural primary care medicine. It is an opportunity that offers a range of experiences, from public health and community service to the use of leading-edge medical technologies like telemedicine.
Rural-PRIME is a combined, five-year M.D. and master's degree program. It focuses on developing physicians who can become leaders and advocates for improving healthcare delivery throughout the state's smaller, more isolated communities. Rural-PRIME offers an innovative curriculum, beginning with the first year of medical school. It is specifically geared toward students from rural backgrounds who have a strong desire to make a difference in communities like the ones in which they were raised.
How you can help
A large part of the shortage in primary care physicians has been attributed to the pull of higher incomes for specialty practice. Primary care practice in rural areas is much more challenging for a UC Davis medical student weighing career options against an average debt load of over $100,000. Therefore, to attract the best students into Rural-PRIME, financial obstacles to entering medical school and choosing rural practice be reduced. Many students simply would not consider Rural-PRIME without substantial scholarship funding.
Precepting, mentoring and other opportunities are available for alumni interested in participating in Rural-PRIME.