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California Residency Programs Incorporate Chronic Disease Care into Physician Training

In a California Healthline Special Report, four insiders discussed how a resident training project is helping incorporate chronic care management into physician training in California.

The Special Report includes comments from:

  • Bruce Bagley of the American Academy of Family Practitioners;
  • Christine Kelso, an assistant clinical professor of medicine at UC-San Diego;
  • Kimberly Maxon, a third-year internal medicine resident at UCSD; and
  • Ed Wagner, director of the MacColl Institute for Healthcare Innovation.

The recently completed 17-month training project, led by Wagner’s organization, involved 19 teams of residents from nine California medical schools.

Wagner, who developed the nationally recognized chronic care model used in the project, said many people with chronic illness receive substandard care — both in California and across the nation. Part of the problem is that most medical students shy away from careers in primary care, where most chronic illness care takes place, he said.

Project organizers hope the initiative will encourage new doctors to stay in California and help improve care delivery. Bagley and Kelso said today’s residents also will drive change in future medical school training.

“I think all of us are seeing this as just a beginning,” Kelso said, adding, “We all have a very long way to go, but it’s very invigorating to be around people who are interested in similar things and interested in really improving our patient care in a state” (Rebillot, California Healthline, 5/19).

The California HealthCare Foundation, which funded the training project, publishes California Healthline.

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